March was a good month for South Florida home sales.
All three counties posted increases in closed residential sales compared to March 2016, according to the Miami, Greater Fort Lauderdale and the Palm Beaches Realtors’ associations. The figures are a stark contrast from February’s numbers, including double-digit drops in closed sales in Miami-Dade and Broward counties, and minimal gains in Palm Beach.
In Miami-Dade, residential sales increased by 5.6 percent in March compared to the previous year, to 2,603 closed sales from 2,465. Condo sales rose 2.3 percent year-over-year and single-family home sales increased by 9.2 percent, according to the report. In all, total sales volume for all properties in Miami-Dade was $1.17 billion last month, up 17.4 percent from the $996.5 million in sales volume for March 2017.
The Miami Association of Realtors attributed the strong month to low mortgage rates and the expectation that interest rates will rise. Distressed sales also continued to fall, reflecting a nationwide trend. In Miami-Dade, distressed sales declined 39.4 percent year-over-year, to 291 from 480.
Condo and home prices also rose in March. Single-family home prices jumped by 15 percent, to $322,000 from $280,000. Condo prices increased 7.4 percent to $225,000 from $209,500, excluding new development.
Broward posted less dramatic gains in residential sales and home prices.
Residential sales increased 3.2 percent year-over-year to 3,168 closed sales from 3,068, according to the Greater Fort Lauderdale Realtors. Single-family homes fared slightly better than condos and townhouses, increasing by 3.8 percent to 1,495 from 1,440. Condo and townhome sales rose 2.8 percent last month compared to the previous year, to 1,673 closed sales from 1,628.
While sales increased across the board, it’s interesting to note that Broward had fewer cash buyers than a year ago. Cash sales of single-family homes fell 17.5 percent, and condo and townhome cash deals dropped by 1.4 percent.
The inventory of homes, condos and townhouses fell about 8 percent to 10 months of supply, down from 10.9 months of residential properties available for sale.
Palm Beach County closed $866.4 million of residential sales in March, up 21.7 percent from the previous year. Closed sales increased to 1,676 deals, which represented a 10.3 percent increase from March 2016. The median sales price jumped by 8.9 percent to $325,000.