Florida Market Report
Welcome, please find the most recent Florida Realtors Market update brought to you by Barry Hoey PA & Kimberly Zuponcic PA with the Hoey Team ☘ eXp Realty who serve in Southwest; Central / Mid FL & All of Florida which we cover with our Team / Co-op, directly & indirectly as we grow.
Closed Sales, Median Prices Up as Pending Sales Drop in March
MARCH 2020: FLORIDA HOUSING REPORT
ORLANDO, Fla., April 21st, 2020 – from Brad O'Connor Ph.D. Florida Realtors
Florida Realtors has just released its existing home sale statistics for the month of March, and let me start off by saying that you might find a couple of these numbers I'm about to share with you a little surprising, given the situation our economy and our country is in with the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
If you're like most people, when the stats come out each month you gravitate immediately to the two headline metrics: closed sales and median sale price. Well, if you do that this month, what you'll find is that both of these stats were up soundly on a year-over-year basis. Closed sales of existing single-family homes were up 6.4 percent versus last March, and the median sale price in this category rose to $275,000 year-over-year increase of 7.4 percent.
Over in the condo and townhouse category, growth in closed sales was a little less than we saw with single-family homes, but still solid at 4.7 percent. The median sale price for condos and townhouses, however, saw its biggest year-over-year monthly increase since February 2017, rising by almost 11 percent up to $210,000.So what gives? Why such strong numbers during a month when the economy was clearly moving in the other direction?
Well, most importantly, a large share of home sales that closed in March actually went under contract in January and February particularly those sales that required financing. And obviously, with a significant share of March's closed sales locked in before the month even began, sale *prices* were locked in as well.
In general, this aspect of closed sales and median sale prices make them lagging indicators for the market, especially in times of turmoil like we're experiencing today.
I should also mention, though, that year-over-year differences in closed sales were actually starting to trend downward in the latter stages of March, but these losses were simply outweighed by a significant rise in the first half to two-thirds of the month.To get a better picture about how the landscape in Florida's residential real estate markets was changing in March, let's take a look at new pending sales, which is the count of how many home sales went under contract during the month.
This is where some of you might see numbers more like what you may have been expecting. On the single-family home side, we had a year-over-year drop in new pending sales of about 23 percent, while over on the condo and townhouse side, we saw a decline of 35 percent compared to last year. New pending sales were really the first metric to turn in a negative direction after the stock market began to fall in late February, as buyers increasingly became wary of making a commitment as large as a home purchase in the face of such sudden economic uncertainty.
This trend only accelerated through the end of the month, when the local closures and stay-at-home orders started to be issued. On the supply side, new listings fell, as well, but not by as much as new pending sales.
New listings of single-family homes were down 3.6 percent, while new listings of condos and townhouses declined by 10.4 percent.
Some sellers were probably anxious to get their homes on the market early on, as new listings were not really down very much until the second half of the month, when social distancing concerns became more prevalent.
By the end of the month, new listings were actually falling at close to the same rate as new pending sales, but because this trend came so late in the month, it isn't really reflected in the overall numbers.
The drops in both new pending sales and new listings point to a situation in which both demand and supply are in decline, at least in the short run. Other things equal, when demand falls, it exerts downward pressure on prices and leads to a decline in sales.
With falling supply, however, we get a reduction in transactions, but also *upward* pressure on prices, as the number of available homes becomes scarce. So for now, we should expect to see significantly lower sales counts for April and May than we did last year, but movement in sale prices will be more stable for the time being, since the reductions in both supply and demand have countervailing impacts on home values.
The longer-term forecast is still hazy, unfortunately. We have seen the Federal Reserve, Congress, and the White House pull out all the stops to provide temporary relief in an attempt to essentially put the economy into suspended animation, but we still need to see how much success our local, state, and federal governments will have formulating and executing their plans to reopen America for business.
Until we really have a good idea of how this is going to work, it is really difficult to see what's in store for housing much past a couple months from now.
Please inquire for more information and feel free to share this update with others.
Barry & Kim with the Hoey Team ☘ Brokered by eXp Realty
Barry Hoey PA, REALTOR®, GRI
Full time Real Estate Broker Associate
Kimberly Zuponcic PA, Realtor
Full time Real Estate Sales Associate
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