The median sale price for a Palm Beach County single-family home in July was $249,000, a 15 percent increase from last year but lower than the recent high of $265,000 in April, according to a Realtors Association of the Palm Beaches report released today.
At the same time, the inventory of homes for sale grew slightly to 5.1 months compared to 4.8 in June. It was still 41 percent below last year’s inventory of 8.5 months’ supply.
Homebuyers have wrestled all year with dwindling inventory and cash buyers snapping up reasonably-priced homes. An attorney said this morning the push to move foreclosure cases through the courts may be responsible for the increase in inventory, but it also could be true that fence-sitting sellers are seeing an opportunity to finally list their homes as prices climb.
“I don’t see how this couldn’t eventually negatively affect pricing,” said foreclosure defense attorney Matt Weidner about the court’s effort to flush the system of older cases. “The banks are being forced to take properties they don’t want.”
Homes are also selling faster, moving from market to sale in 53 days in July, down from 91 days in July 2012 and 140 days in 2009.
The median sale price for a condominium in July was $107,000 up 19 percent from the same time last year. Of those, 76 percent were cash sales.
Statewide closed sales of existing single-family homes totaled 20,632 in July, up 17.5 percent compared to the year-ago figure, according to data from Florida Realtors.
The statewide median sales price for single-family existing homes last month was $179,500, up 20 percent from the previous year.
Nationally, home sales were up 6.5 percent in July to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.39 million and are 17 percent above last year’s sales.
The median sales price nationally rose 14 percent from last year to $213,500 and marked 17 consecutive months of year-over-year price increases. This last occurred from January 2005 to May 2006.
The median price has risen at double-digit rates for the past eight months, and is now 7.3 percent below the all-time record of $230,400 in July 2006. Two years ago, the median price was 25.7 percent below the peak.
Lawrence Yun, chief economist for the National Association of Realtors, said buyers are motivated by climbing mortgage interest rates.
“Mortgage interest rates are at the highest level in two years, pushing some buyers off the sidelines,” he said. “The initial rise in interest rates provided strong incentive for closing deals. However, further rate increases will diminish the pool of eligible buyers.”
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on Wednesday, August 21st, 2013 at 10:30 am and is filed under Housing affordability, Housing boom, Mortgages, Real estate bust.
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