Miami real estate market continues to be popular with US and overseas buyers

The Miami real estate market, one of the most popular in the nation with international and domestic buyers, continued to gain momentum in March with sales growing strongly.

The latest data shows that single family home transactions registered double digit growth year on year and existing condominium sales rose despite an increase in new condo construction.

The figures from the Miami Association of Realtors reveal that single family home sales are up 10% compared with a year ago. This comes on top of a record 2014. While condo sales were up 4.2% year on year.

‘Miami continues to attract international and domestic home buyers looking to live in a global city with world-class amenities and a diversified economy. Buyer demand in Miami properties is leading to more sales and higher sale prices,’ said Christopher Zoller, the association’s 2015 residential president.

The report points out that single family home prices remain at affordable 2004 levels despite more than four years of consistent year on year increases. Condo prices has seen 45 months of growth in the last 46 months.

Prices are also seeing growth. The median sale price for single family homes increased 10.6% to $260,000 in March 2015 from $235,000 in March 2014. The average sale price for single family homes increased 3.2% to $473,677 last month from $459,102 during the same time period last year.

The median sale price for condominiums surged 7.5 percent in March to $215,000 from $200,000 a year ago. The average sale price for condos increased 5.8 percent to $398,994 from $377,290 in March 2014.

Miami single family homes and condominiums continue to sell close to asking price, reflecting a strong consumer demand, the association says. The median number of days on the market for single family homes sold in March 2015 was 54 days, an increase of 14.9% compared to the same period in 2014. The average percent of original list price received was 94.6%, down a negligible 0.3% from a year earlier.

The median number of days on the market for condominiums sold in March 2015 was 60 days, an increase of 1.7 percent compared to the same period in 2014. The average percent of original list price received was 93.5% a 0.7% decrease.

In Florida as a whole sales of existing single family homes were up 24.6% over March 2014, according to Florida Realtors while condominium sales were up 13.7% compared to March 2014.

The statewide median sale price for single family existing homes last month was $190,000, up 9.2% from the previous year, according to Florida Realtors. The statewide median price for townhouse condo properties in March was $152,000, up 8.6% over the year ago figure.

Miami sees twice the national average of cash buyers, representing 54.2% of sales in March 2015, down from 60.5% in March 2014. Nationally, just 24% of all national housing transactions are made in cash. Since 82% of foreign buyers in Florida purchase properties all cash, Miami’s high percentage of cash buyers continues to reflect South Florida’s ability to attract international buyers. Condominiums comprise a large portion of Miami’s cash purchases as 67.3% of sales in March compared to 38.6% of single family home sales.

While traditional sales remain strong, distressed property transactions declined in Miami due to fewer short sales. In March 2015, only 28% of residential sales in Miami were distressed, including REO (bank-owned properties) and short sales, compared to 31.6% in March 2014.

Short sales and REOs accounted for 5.6% and 22.4% of Miami sales in March. Short sale transactions decreased 42.6% year on year while REOs increased 13%. Nationally, distressed sales were 10% in March, down from 14% a year ago.