Florida’s home market reported more closed sales, higher median prices, more pending sales, and continued low inventory levels in November, according to the latest housing data from Florida Realtors.
Last month, closed single-family home sales totaled 27,541, an increase of 4.3% year over year while existing condo-townhouse sales totaled 11,598, a decrease of 5.4% from November 2020. Closed sales can take anywhere between 30 and 90 days after sales contracts are written.
Real estate agents with knowledge of the Florida landscape say that buyer demand and the pace of sales have continued to push home prices to a new level. However, buyers may be in for some good news: an expected increase to mortgage rates could ease the price creep.
“How high sales levels are compared to two years ago, before the pandemic, is even more impressive,” Dr. Brad O’Connor, Florida Realtors chief economist, said in a statement. “Compared to November 2019, sales this November were up by over 28% for single-family homes and by over 37% for condos and townhouses. The significant volume of home sales we’ve been experiencing continued to keep inventory levels low in November, however.”
“As of the end of the month, single-family home inventory was down by over 31% compared to a year ago, while condo and townhouse inventory was down by close to 56%. It is primarily the huge rate of sales, and not a lack of new listings coming on to the market, that have kept inventories so low. In fact, year-to-date, there have been almost 4% more single-family homes and 7% more condos and townhouses listed for sale in 2021 than by this time in 2019, before the pandemic. These homes are simply selling so quickly that many potential buyers never have a chance to consider them.”
According to data from the Florida Realtors Research Department in collaboration with local Realtor boards/associations, the statewide median sales price for single-family existing homes was $364,900 in November, up 19.6% from the previous year. The statewide median price for condo-townhouse units was $273,270 last month, an increase of 19.9% from November 2020. The median price represents the midpoint; half of the residences sold for more, while half sold for less.
As has been the case for several months, the share of concluded sales involving cash purchases increased last month as compared to the previous year. In November, cash sales of single-family existing homes surged by 41.8% year over year while cash sales of condo-townhouse units increased by 20.3%.
Last month, inventory (active listings) remained constrained on the supply side of the market. In November, single-family homes had a 1.2-month supply, while condo-townhouse properties had a 1.5-month supply.
According to Freddie Mac, the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage interest rate averaged 3.07% last month, up from 2.77% in November 2020.
Florida’s Luxury Market Heats Up
The luxury residential market in South Florida is booming, with sales of properties priced at $10 million or more increasing at an exponential rate.
Residential sales in Miami-Dade, Broward, and Palm Beach counties during the last 12 months at that price point greatly exceeded sales in the preceding two years combined, according to Multiple Listing Service data. The data set contains both single-family and multi-family dwellings.
Between December 2020 and November 2021, residential purchases of at least $10 million increased to 394, representing $6.9 billion in sales volume.
This is an increase of 158%, or almost two-and-a-half times, the 153 sales in that price bracket between December 2019 and November 2020, and also nearly triples the approximately $2.4 billion in total sales that year. Prior to the pandemic, the tri-county region had 104 homes priced at $10 million or more, with a combined value of $1.6 billion.
Additionally, total sales dollar volume is more than four times what it was in 2019.
Sales of waterfront homes, which are normally the most expensive properties on the market, have surged. Among the purchasers are technology and financial titans. Recent deals for prime properties include Hewlett Packard Enterprises CEO Antonio Neri’s $14-million sale of a home in Delray Beach. Also selling in December was a 16,000-square-foot oceanfront compound in Palm Beach that traded hands for $90 million.