South Florida’s resi markets are slowly improving: Elliman

Sellers either adjusting their pricing or letting some listings expire

Miami Beach
Miami Beach

Sellers are finally getting realistic about pricing, and the result is a far more robust residential market.

Across South Florida, residential sales improved during the second quarter of this year, with cities like Palm Beach, Fort Lauderdale and Delray Beach emerging as the stronger markets, according to new second-quarter market reports from Douglas Elliman.

In Miami Beach, for example, sales were up for the second consecutive quarter after three years of declines. “The general takeaway is that for nearly all of the markets, we saw an uptick in sales activity,” said Jonathan Miller, who authors the Elliman reports.

“Sellers of high-end real estate are more in sync with reality than they have been in the past,” he added, either reducing their prices or letting some listings expire.

“The more overpriced listings expire, which is good for the incoming listings,” Miller said. “We’re not seeing them go back on the market.”

Here’s a breakdown of each market.

Miami Beach

In Miami Beach, closed residential sales increased 3.7 percent year-over-year to 926 from 893, marking the second quarter that sales rose in that market. But prices were down, which shows that sellers are moving away from the “aspirational pricing” seen last year, Miller said. The median sale price fell by 5.9 percent to nearly $409,500 for all residential properties, compared to $435,000 a year ago.

Condo sales increased by 1.2 percent year-over-year by 10 units to 814, and single-family home sales were up nearly 26 percent year-over-year to 112 homes sold, compared to 89. The median condo sale price fell by 4.9 percent to nearly $365,000, and the median sale price of a single-family home price dropped year-over-year by 12.5 percent to $1.4 million.


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Condo sales in Miami took a hit during the second quarter, leading to an overall 4.3 percent year-over-year decline in residential sales. Slightly more than 4,200 homes and condos sold in Miami last quarter, down from 4,390. The median sale price rose 7.1 percent to $300,000 as prices in Miami continue rising.

The mainland reported a 13.2 percent year-over-year drop in condo closings to nearly 2,000 sales from 2,289, a decline that was more pronounced in the luxury market. Home sales were up 5.5 percent to 2,216 from 2,101. The luxury home market reported a 5.5 percent increase as well.

Fort Lauderdale

Closed residential sales in Fort Lauderdale increased 10.5 percent year-over-year to nearly 1,200 from 1,085 for the second quarter of 2016. Unlike in Miami Beach, prices also jumped for both condos and townhouses and for single-family homes. The median sale price fell 1.3 percent to $286,000 for a condo and rose 9.4 percent to $339,000 for a single-family home.

Delray Beach

Delray Beach, which is undergoing significant redevelopment, experienced a bump in sales. Single-family homes fared better than condos, with a 10.2 percent year-over-year jump in closings to 379 from 344. Condo sales were up to 740 units from 736 units.

The median price of a house dropped 7.1 percent to $405,000 in Delray. For a condo, the median increased 8.4 percent to $135,500, as inventory fell from the previous quarter by 7.3 percent to 963 units from 1,038.

Palm Beach

Closings leapt 20.8 percent year-over-year to 139 from 115 . Condo sales increased by 9.5 percent to 92 from 84, and the sales of single-family homes increased a whopping 51.6 percent to 47 closings from 31.

Across the board, the median price of a single-family home in Palm Beach was $4.2 million for the second quarter of this year, down 6.7 percent from the previous year. In the luxury sector, which the report defines as the top 10 percent of the market, the median sales price increased 56.5 percent to $15.8 million from $10.1 million. Closed sales posted significant gains in the luxury sector, as well, with a 13.1 percent year-over-year drop in inventory.