Florida home buyers closed on 25,921 single-family homes in March, up 9.3 percent. Condo sales rose 11.4 percent to 11,193. Homes throughout Florida traded for a median $231,900, 10.4 percent more than last year, while condos sold for $171,000, a 9.4 percent gain.
March turned out to be one of the strongest month’s real estate experts have seen in a long time for sales of existing homes in the Sunshine State. Sales for both single-family homes and for townhouse-condo units in March marked the fourth-highest monthly total for any single month over the past decade.
The data shows that inventory levels in the more affordable price tiers continue to fall, especially in the case of single-family homes. The number of active single-family home listings was down almost 5 percent year-over-year at the end of March. As a result, the single-family sector remained a seller’s market, though the inventory situation in the townhouse-condo market appears more balanced.
Nationwide, Americans purchased homes in March at the fastest pace in over a decade, a strong start to the traditional spring buying season.
Sales of existing homes climbed 4.4 percent last month to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.71 million, the National Association of Realtors said. That was the fastest sales rate since February 2007.
The U.S. housing market faces something of a split personality: A stable economy has intensified demand from would-be buyers, but the number of properties listed for sale has been steadily fading. The result of this trend is prices rising faster than incomes, homes staying on the market for fewer days, and a limit on just how much home sales can grow. It’s a situation that rewards would-be buyers who can act quickly and decisively.
The pace of sales the state saw in March is unsustainable. Sales may be soaring, but inventory isn’t.
The inventory shortage largely reflects the legacy of a housing bubble that began to burst a decade ago.
Foreclosed properties were snapped up by investors who turned the homes into income-generating rentals, depriving the market of supply. And many owners who escaped the downturn unharmed chose to refinance their mortgages at extremely low rates, possibly making them hesitant to move to a new house that could increase their monthly costs.
This mismatch between supply and demand can be seen in two simple figures tracked by the Realtors.
Sales have risen 5.9 percent over the past year, but the inventory of homes for sale has fallen 6.6 percent to 1.83 million properties. This means there are essentially more buyers chasing fewer properties.
The consequences can be seen in home values and days on the market. The median sales price in March climbed 6.8 percent over the past year to $236,400, significantly outpacing wage growth. And it took an average of 34 days to complete a sale, compared to 47 days a year ago.
To learn more about the current state of the Florida real estate market contact 9 Core Realty today!