South Florida home sales wilt as inventory surges

Home sales were down sharply in South Florida in August as more sellers placed their homes on the market, according to the Florida Realtors.

While supply has increased and demand has lessened, home prices remain high. With interest rates set to increase further, that could put homeownership out of reach for more potential buyers.

Sales of single-family homes dropped 22.6% to 3,526 transactions in the tri-county area, compared to the same month a year ago. The median sales price increased 13.1% to $560,000.

The trend was similar throughout Florida, with single-family home sales down 15.8% to 24,877 and the median sales price up 15% to $407,000.

For the South Florida condo/townhouse market, sales plummeted 23.8% to 3,989 transactions. The median sales price increased 15.3% to $311,250.

Statewide, condo/townhouse sales fell 20.3% to 10,000 while the median sales price jumped 20.8% to $305,000.

“The much-needed gains in active inventory will hopefully ease the pressure of rising home prices for buyers,” said Florida Realtors President Christina Pappas, VP of the Keyes Family of Cos. in Miami.

Florida Realtors Chief Economist Brad O’Connor noted that home inventory levels are still well below the pre-pandemic numbers in 2019. He said inventory is growing mostly because fewer homes are selling, but new sales listings are down.

“This trend is expected to continue for the time being as some homeowners are averse to listing in this uncertain economic environment,” O’Connor said.

Miami-Dade County

In Miami-Dade County, single-family home sales dropped 21.2% to 1,032 transactions while the median sales price climbed 10.1% to $551,250, according to the Miami Association of Realtors. In the luxury market, sales of homes for $1 million and up fell 28.7%. Active listings surged 26%, so the supply of inventory at the current sales pace was up to 3.3 months. That’s still a seller’s market, with a low level of inventory for sale.

Condo/townhouse sales in Miami-Dade plummeted 26% to 1,473 while the median sales price grew 11.9% to $375,000. It was a rough month for the luxury market, as sales of $1 million-plus units declined 38.7%. Active listings declined 24%, so the supply of inventory at the current sales price dropped to 3.4 months. That’s a seller’s market.

“The Fed’s efforts to tackle inflation has resulted in higher mortgage rates and a heightened sense of economic uncertainty which has served to moderate Miami’s record-breaking real estate market,” said Fernando Arencibia Jr., chair of the Miami Association of Realtors. “Nevertheless, Miami sales remain higher than before the pandemic, median prices continue to appreciate, albeit at a slower pace, the region continues seeing wage growth and migration, and more single-family inventory is coming to the market.”

Broward County

Sales of single-family homes in Broward County declined 26% to 1,202 transactions while the median sales price surged 13.6% to $562,500, according to the Broward, Palm Beaches & St. Lucie Realtors. For homes of $1 million and up, sales were down 13.8%. Active listings increased 46.7%, so the supply of inventory at the current sales pace rose to 2.5 months. That’s still a seller’s market.

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Broward sales of condos/townhouses were down 16.6% to 1,498 while the median sales price jumped 20.5% to $265,000. The luxury market suffered, with sales of $1 million-plus units down 40.3%. Active listings declined 7%, so the supply of inventory at the current sales pace remained at 2.1 months. That’s a seller’s market.

“We’re starting to see supply levels improve with the help of increasing interest rates and inflation,” said Carlos A. Melendez, president of the Broward, Palm Beaches & St. Lucie Realtors. “Yes, we have more supply entering the market, but Broward County is still seeing intense competition among buyers. Our area is one of the most sought-after regions to purchase real estate in the country.”

Palm Beach County

Single-family home sales in Palm Beach County dropped 20.4% to 1,292 transactions while the median sales price soared 17.7% to $565,000, according to the Broward, Palm Beaches & St. Lucie Realtors. However, the luxury market held up well, with sales of $1 million and up increasing 1.8%. Active listings surged 63.1%, so the supply of inventory at the current sales pace nearly doubled to 2.7 months. That’s a seller’s market.

Sales of condos/townhouses in Palm Beach County fell 29.7% to 1,018 while the median sales price jumped 25.4% to $291,000. On the luxury market, sales of $1 million-plus units were down 24.2%. Active listings climbed 28%, so the supply of inventory at the current sales pace grew to 2.1 months. That’s a seller’s market.

Source: South Florida Business Journal