Strong demand exists for high-end condos

The luxury home market continues to grow in Naples, with buyers showing more interest in high-end condos, according to a recent Market Report the Naples Area Board of Realtors released.

The report tracks all sales made by its members in Collier County through the Southwest Florida MLS, excluding Marco Island.

The 12-month rolling numbers are remarkable for properties above $1 million, especially in the condominium market, where the data shows a 60 percent increase in closed sales over the last 12 months.

As reflected in the report, there were 56 closed sales of condos above $1 million in the North Naples area in February — 211 percent more than in February 2017.

With an increase in demand for high-end condos came a 16 percent decrease in inventory for condos priced at $1 million to $2 million, compared to last year.

There is not a lot of develop-able land that is left as far as high-end condos on the beach. The region has pretty much built out a lot of that choice land along the beach, so that’s becoming less and less of an option.

However, condos in the $300,000-and-less market had the highest increase reported among all price categories and home types, with a 6 percent increase in inventory, the report showed.

The report showed a 3 percent decrease for overall inventory to 6,286 properties compared with 6,466 properties in February 2017.

Overall closed sales increased 10 percent to 672 homes sold compared with 613 homes sold in February 2017. The overall median closed price was $364,000 — 9 percent more than last year’s figure.

The greatest decrease in price appeared in the category of $1 million to $2 million. That 12 percent drop was to $1.33 million from $1.5 million in February 2017.

The report showed 44 of the 52 homes purchased in the $2 million price category were cash purchases.

Overall pending sales in February decreased 3 percent, but they increased 14 percent in the $1 million-and-above price category and 39 percent in the $2 million-and-over category.

To learn more about the real estate market in SWFL or to get involved in purchasing real estate in the area, contact an expert member of the 9 Core Realty team today!

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You need to make at least $70K a year to afford the average home in Florida, says study

The majority of us probably don’t make enough to own an average home in Florida, according a recent study.

A new study from How Much, a finance information website, states that Floridians needs to make roughly $70,360 a year in order to afford the average home.

The site came this conclusion by taking the average price of homes in every state from real estate site Zillow, and plugging them into a mortgage calculator with a 10 percent down payment. They then applied the basic rule that your mortgage shouldn’t exceed 30 percent of your income before taxes.

According to Zillow, the average home “Zestimate” in the state of Florida is $220,600. It should also be noted that in the last year property values have gone up 8.3 percent and are projected to go up another 3.1 percent in the next year.

According to Data USA, the median household income in Florida is only $49,426, which of course means that most Floridians are being priced out of owning most homes.

Florida ranks 12th in the country for most expensive homes. Hawaii is the most expensive, with an estimated income of $153,520 needed to buy a home. West Virginia is the lowest with an estimated income of $38,320 needed.

To learn more about Florida real estate, purchasing land in Florida or investing in Florida land and properties, contact an  expert member of the 9 Core Realty Team today.

Millennial home buying on the rise in Southwest Florida

Millennials looking for a home do not like Florida and the Fort Myers area. That’s according to a recent study done by LendingTree, but some local real estate experts are not buying it.

According to that study, five cities in Florida landed on its top 10 least-popular cities for millennial home buyers. Fort Myers came in as the second-least favorite.

Area real estate experts feel that the region is doing many proactive things to draw in a younger crowd of homebuyers, many of which are successful.  In fact, 2017 was a good year for millennial home buyers in Southwest Florida. Last year 80 percent of first-time home buyers were actually millennials in the area.

More signs point to growth in young home buyers in our area. Building permits for affordable housing — priced around $250,000 or less — increased by 39 percent in 2017.

Are you a millennial ready to buy in SWFL? Give 9 Core Realty a shout today! We can help.

Collier County High End Home Sales Surge

The high-end residential real estate market in Naples continues to soar, with a 10% increase in closed sales of homes priced at $1 million and up in February over February 2017.

In total, 672 homes were sold in Naples last month, up from 613 homes sold in February 2016, according to a report from the Naples Area Board of Realtors. The report tracks home listings and sales within Collier County, excluding Marco Island.

The overall median closed price increased year-over-year in February as well, from $333,000 in February 2017 to $364,000 last month, a jump of 9%. This was due in part to a 95% increase in closed sales for properties priced over $1 million in February.  Several other price points, however, dropped year-over-year in February, the report adds.

Overall inventory continued to rise for the fifth straight month, to 6,286 properties. That figure is down 3% from February 2017. Overall pending sales in February decreased 3%, but it increased 14% in the $1 million and above price category and 39% in the $2 million and over price category, the report shows.

Many area real estate experts believe that the high end market is poised for a good year. The economy is doing much better. The stock market has risen substantially over the last year. All in all many Americans have seen their financial picture improve. This should translate to improved sales, particularly with the high-end market.

To learn more about the real estate market in Southwest Florida, contact an expert member of the 9 Core Realty team today.

 

Fla. Housing Market: Sales, Median Prices, New Listings Up in Feb. 2018

Florida’s housing market reported more closed sales, more new listings and higher median prices in February even as for-sale inventory remained tight, according to the latest housing data released by Florida Realtors.

Florida’s economy continues to grow, with more jobs being created – the state’s unemployment rate was 3.9% in January. A strong economy is good for Florida’s housing market. Statewide sales increased in both the existing single-family homes and the townhouse-condo sectors in February, yet many local markets are still facing a tight supply of available homes at a time when buyer demand is rising. Those factors are putting pressure on home prices and affordability.

There is some good news for buyers: In February, new listings for single-family homes rose 6 percent year-over-year, while new townhouse-condo listings increased 6.9 percent.

Sales of single-family homes statewide totaled 18,620 last month, up 3.3 percent compared to February 2017. Meanwhile, the statewide median sales price for single-family existing homes was $246,500, up 9.6 percent from the previous year, according to data from Florida Realtors Research Department in partnership with local Realtor boards/associations. The statewide median price for townhouse-condo properties in January was $179,500, up 7.2 percent over the year-ago figure.

February marked 74 months-in-a-row that the statewide median sales prices for both single-family homes and townhouse-condo properties rose year-over-year. The median is the midpoint; half the homes sold for more, half for less.

According to the National Association of Realtors (NAR), the national median sales price for existing single-family homes in January 2018 was $241,700, up 5.7 percent from the previous year; the national median existing condo price was $231,600. In California, the statewide median sales price for single-family existing homes in January was $527,800; in Massachusetts, it was $369,000; in New York, it was $266,000; and in Maryland, it was $264,016.

Looking at Florida’s townhouse-condo market, statewide closed sales totaled 8,457 last month, up 6.4 percent compared to February 2017. Closed sales data reflected fewer short sales and foreclosures last month: Short sales for townhouse-condo properties declined 24.4 percent and foreclosures fell 51.8 percent year-to-year; short sales for single-family homes dropped 43.3 percent and foreclosures fell 51.3 percent year-to-year. Closed sales may occur from 30- to 90-plus days after sales contracts are written.

The latest figures from Florida Realtors show sales of existing homes rose modestly in February, while sale prices continued to climb at a very brisk pace. Year-over-year sales growth for single family homes checked in at 3.3 percent in February – the largest such gain we’ve seen since last June. That said, given the current nationwide shortage of housing at the more affordable end of the pricing spectrum, as well as the specter of rising mortgage rates, we probably shouldn’t expect to do much better than this over the next several months, at least on a consistent basis.

By contrast, year-over-year sales growth in the statewide townhouse-condo category was quite strong in February, at 6.4 percent. However, local trends may differ, as we’re seeing a lot of variation in condo and townhouse markets across the state.

February’s for-sale inventory remained tight with a 3.9-months’ supply for single-family homes and a 6-months’ supply for townhouse-condo properties, according to Florida Realtors.

According to Freddie Mac, the interest rate for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 4.33 percent in February 2018, up from the 4.17 percent averaged during the same month a year earlier.

To learn more about the current real estate market in Florida contact an expert member of the 9 Core Realty team!

Colombian interest in Miami real estate holds steady into 2018

Colombians continued searching for Miami homes in January, according to a new report from the Miami Association of Realtors.

Potential buyers from Colombia again led a ranking of foreign nationals searching for South Florida homes using the association’s website, with 12.6 percent of the total, up from 10.5 percent the previous month. The list also includes Venezuela with 9.5 percent and Canada with 7 percent.

Foreign investment in residential real estate in South Florida totaled $7.1 billion last year, up nearly 15 percent from the previous year’s $6.2 billion. Colombian and Canadian home buyers tied for the third-most international home purchases in South Florida last year with 9 percent, each.

Check out the full list for January:

  1. Colombia: 12.6%
  2. Venezuela 9.5%
  3. Canada 7.0%
  4. Brazil 5.8%
  5. Argentina: 5.0%
  6. India: 4.1%
  7. Peru: 3.9%
  8. Spain: 3.2%
  9. Philippines: 3.1%
  10. Dominican Republic: 2.7%

Within the U.S., those most interested in buying residential real estate in South Florida were from Texas, North Carolina, California, New York and Georgia, according to the report.  If you are interested in investing in Florida land and real estate, contact an expert member of the 9 Core Realty team today!

 

What is Greenwashing?

If you’re looking for a green, energy-efficient home, you need to be on  guard. That’s because some homes are being marketed as environmentally-friendly and energy-saving when they’re not. The practice is called “greenwashing,” and experts said it’s a growing problem.

With the wave of green living in SWFL, since the opening of Babcock Ranch, many builders are making this claim.  Homes in Babcock Ranch are all green certified. But what does that mean?

A truly green home will take into consideration six elements of green building:

  1. Site
  2. Water efficiency
  3. Energy efficiency
  4. Indoor air quality
  5. Materials
  6. Operations and maintenance

If the house doesn’t meet those six criteria, and the seller is still calling the property “green,” chances are it’s just a marketing ploy, also known as “greenwashing.”

“Greenwashing” is a growing problem, and that’s why house hunters need to do their research. Green is more than just energy efficient. It’s about the whole design and building process. Everything from the air conditioning systems and how energy efficient they are, to where the builders purchase material and where it comes from in the country. If it’s local or somewhere out of state, if it’s less of a carbon footprint, if it’s less of an impact on the environment. Builders look at all the different aspects of construction and how they impact the environment.

That’s why you have to be your own advocate. Don’t be afraid to question the sellers and ask them to put in writing what they have and provide you with documents. You can also find out if a home is certified by ‘The National Green Building Standard’ or the ‘Florida Green Building Coalition.’

If you get a home certified, that kind of gives you an insurance policy that says yes, this builder built my home with all these elements in mind and built it to this particular standard. So, that’s kind of like an insurance policy that you weren’t ‘greenwashed,’ you actually had a home built to a green standard.

Are you ready to build a green home in SWFL? We have the perfect land lot for you! Give 9 Core Realty a call today to learn more!