Homes sales surge ahead in Miami as strong interest from foreign buyers continues

Prices of single family homes in Miami have surged with the market overall seeing price growth for 16 months in a row, the latest data from the Miami Association of Realtors shows.

The median sales price of single family homes have increased by 25.1% to $225,000 year on year and in March prices were up 16% on February, the highest percentage increase for the median sales price of single family homes since the height of the previous real estate boom in 2005.

The median sales price of condominiums, which has significantly increased each of the last 21 months, rose 19.3% to $167,000 compared to a year earlier and 1.2% compared to the previous month.

‘The Miami real estate market is experiencing comprehensive strengthening fuelled by robust demand and limited supply,’ said Natascha Tello, chairman of the board of the Miami Association of Realtors.

‘The local market has seen consistent double-digit appreciation for a significant number of months while inventory declines in every price point, reflecting the demand that exists for all types of Miami properties,’ she explained.

‘Current market indicators coupled with buyer trends and Miami’s worldwide appeal point to solid strengthening into the future,’ she added.

Statewide in Florida median sales prices in March increased 15.2% to $160,000 for single family homes and 15.9% to $120,000 for condominiums.

The national median existing home price for all housing types was $184,300 in March, an 11.8% increase from March 2012, according to the National Association of Realtors (NAR).

Miami-Dade County residential sales increased 2.7% in March compared to record sales levels a year earlier. The sales of existing single family homes in Miami-Dade increased 6.1% from 963 to 1,022.  Sales of existing condominiums increased 0.5% from 1,451 to 1,458, year on year.
Statewide sales of existing single family homes reached 19,631 in March, up 9% compared to a year ago, according to the latest data from Florida Realtors Industry Data and Analysis department in partnership with local Realtor boards/associations.

Statewide condominium sales totalled 9,957, up 1.1% from March 2012 and nationally, sales of existing single family homes, town homes, condominiums, and co-ops declined 0.6% from February but remain 10.3% higher than they were in March 2012, according to the NAR.

Active listings at the end of March dropped 5% from 13,760, to 13,067, compared to March 2012, when the market was already experiencing a housing shortage.

Inventory of single family homes dropped 9.7% while that of condominiums decreased 1.9%. At the current sales pace, there are 5.1 months of supply of single family homes and 5.9 months of supply of condominiums in Miami-Dade, representing drops of 19.1% 6.6% respectively compared to year ago levels.
‘After several years of market strengthening, the Miami market momentum continues. As a result it is now a great time to sell in Miami,’ said Fernando Martinez residential president of the Miami Association of Realtors.

‘Many local home owners have recovered lost equity and can easily sell their homes, whether single family or condominium, if priced right. Properties are selling very rapidly, yielding close to asking price and generating multiple offers,’ he added.

The data also indicates that fewer distressed sales are helping prices to rise. Strong demand for bank owned (REO) properties and improved processing of short sales continues to yield absorption of distressed listings and to contribute to price appreciation, said the association.
Sales of distressed properties continue to decline in Miami-Dade County, as prices for both REOs and short sales also rise significantly.

In March 41% of all closed residential sales in Miami-Dade County were distressed, including REOs and short sales, compared to 49% in March 2012 and 42.2% the previous month. Nationally, distressed homes accounted for 21 percent of March sales.

The median sales price of single family home and condominium foreclosures increased 10.1% to $144,000 and 23.6% to $105,000 respectively.

In Miami-Dade County, some 64% of total closed sales in March were all cash sales, compared to 66.4% in March 2012 and 66.8% the previous month, indicating there is still strong demand from overseas buyers who tend to be cash buyers.

Cash sales accounted for 44.8% of single family homes, a 1.3% increase over previous year, and 77% of condominium sales, a 2.6% decrease compared to the previous year.