The latest existing home sales figures for Miami-Dade and Broward counties will be released Thursday by the Miami Realtors Association. But brokerage company RE/MAX already has released a preview.
Across South Florida, condo and single-family home sales have dipped both month-to-month and over the past year.
Closed transactions dipped by 13.4% in August 2019 as compared with August 2018, and by 13.6% from July to August of this year, according to the August RE/MAX National Housing Report. The report encompasses Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach counties.
But that may not necessarily be a bad thing.
“It means that the market is competitive. It means the market is doing well,” said John DeMarco, broker and owner of RE/MAX 5 Star Realty in Hollywood. “The drop in the overall number of transactions is a result of the record low inventory rates which has created a lot of competition among buyers. There is not a lot for sale right now, which is reducing the overall number of closed transactions.”
For its report, RE/MAX examined 54 different housing markets throughout the nation and analyzed the Multiple Listings Service, which depends on real estate agents entering data on their transactions.
In Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach counties, homes were on the market for an average 79 days, according to the August report. That’s the same amount of time they had stayed on the market in August 2018.
The median sales price rose to $295,000 — an increase of 5.2% from August 2018. The median listing price was $330,000.
But the active inventory was down almost 7 percent, with 30,130 homes listed in August of 2018 and only 28,072 in August of 2019. That translated into 6.9 months of inventory this year — far closer to the ideal “balanced” market of 6 months than the 8.1 months of inventory listed in August 2018.
About 66% of homes were purchased by buyers from outside the region.
The shortage of homes attainable by middle-class families remains an issue in South Florida, particularly in Miami-Dade County, where rising housing prices have far exceeded wages. Single-family homes priced under $500,000 are the scarcest, wrote DeMarco over email.
“It makes South Florida an expensive place to live,” he said.
Nationally, home purchases declined by 1.6% from a year ago.