REAL ESTATE

South Florida existing home prices up sharply in August

 
 
Miami-Dade and Broward single-family home and condo prices marched higher in August from a year earlier, reflecting tight inventory and strong demand.
Miami-Dade and Broward single-family home and condo prices marched higher in August from a year earlier, reflecting tight inventory and strong demand.
Seth Perlman / AP

mbrannigan@MiamiHerald.com

The peak summer home buying season kept sizzling during August.

The median price of a single-family home in Miami-Dade County leaped 20.5 percent in August to $235,000 from $195,000 a year earlier, according to the Miami Association of Realtors.

Single-family home sales rose 15.1 percent in Miami-Dade to 1,210 closings in August from 1,051 a year earlier, the Miami Realtors said.

The inventory of single-family homes listed for sale in Miami-Dade increased 3.1 percent, but amid strong demand, that level amounted to just a 4.9-month supply of homes on the market, down from a 5.7-month supply a year earlier.

Sales of Miami-Dade single-family homes dipped 1.4 percent in August from July, while the median price rose 2.2 percent month to month.

Miami-Dade’s condo market also continued its dramatic recovery in August. The median price of a Miami-Dade condominium rose 27.5 percent in August to $190,000 from $149,000 a year earlier and was up 5.6 percent from July’s median of $180,000.

Sales of Miami-Dade condos rose 7.9 percent in August to 1,592 units from 1,476 a year earlier and increased 3.5 percent from July’s level of 1,538 closings.

“The Miami real estate market continues to attract record numbers of domestic and international buyers and investors,” Natascha Tello, chairman of the Miami Realtors, said in a statement. “Such demand for Miami properties is driving robust price appreciation despite the fact that more properties are being listed for sale. Current levels of supply reflect a seller’s market, as more consumers are realizing it’s a good time to sell.”

The Broward housing market showed similar results in August.

With inventory tight and homebuyers out in full force, the median price of a single-family home in Broward soared 25.8 percent to $270,500 in August from $214,950 a year earlier, according to the Greater Fort Lauderdale Realtors.

The August median price for a single-family home in Broward marked a 1.6 percent decline from July’s median of $275,000.

Sales of single-family homes in Broward increased 2.3 percent in August to 1,396 from 1,364 a year earlier, even though fewer homes were listed for sale in the county, the Greater Fort Lauderdale Realtors said.

The median price of a Broward condo or townhouse spiked 36.8 percent in August to $118,000 from $86,250 a year earlier and rose 8.8 percent from July’s level of $108,500, the Greater Fort Lauderdale Realtors said.

The inventory of single-family homes listed for sale in Broward dropped 6.3 percent to 4,440 homes in August from 4,739 a year earlier. Broward had just a 3.6-month supply of inventory available for sale on the Multiple Listing Service — or 3.6 times the number of homes on the market as were sold in a month — down from a 4.2-month supply of inventory a year earlier.

Experts typically consider a six-month supply of inventory as a balanced market between buyers and sellers. With less than a six-month supply, prices tend to rise at a rapid clip; the more the inventory rises above a six-month supply, buyers gain the advantage and prices ease.

Condo sales rose 4.3 percent in Broward in August to 1,513 units from 1,451 in August 2012.

“I’m seeing an energized real estate market with a shortage of property to sell,’’ said John Castelli, broker and owner of Castelli Real Estate Services in Wilton Manors and vice president of the Greater Fort Lauderdale Realtors. “There are buyers. The problem is: What are you going to sell them?”

The number of active listings of Broward condos inched up 2.8 percent in August to 6,152 from 5,985 a year earlier, the Realtors group said. But with such intense buyer demand, the supply of inventory for sale dipped to 4.4 months in August from 4.5 months a year earlier — continuing to hand sellers the power to stand firm on prices and sometimes to let competing bidders push up offers above asking price.

Broward condos fetched 95.2 percent of original listing price in August, up from 94.5 percent a year earlier.

Single-family homes in Broward similarly commanded 95.7 percent of their original listing price in August, up from 93.7 percent in August 2012, the Realtors group said.

The $270,500 median price of a single-family home in Broward marked a 1.6 percent decline from the prior month’s median price of $275,000.

With Miami-Dade condo prices marching steadily higher, more owners have been putting condo units up for sale: The inventory of listings swelled 15.7 percent in August to 8,543 units from 7,383 a year earlier. With sales volume up year over year, the inventory increase amounted to a 6-month supply of condos, compared to a 5.6-month supply in August 2012.

Single-family homes were even scarcer than condos in Miami-Dade. In August, Miami-Dade saw a 3.1 percent increase in inventory from a year earlier, but with buyers out in full force, that represented only a 4.9-month supply, down 12.7 percent from August 2012, when the supply of inventory stood at 5.7 times the number of sales.

Read more Broward stories from the Miami Herald

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