The SW Florida real estate market posted a 23.85% gain in sales over the previous month, and a 3.32% gain in median price over the previous month, according to latest sales statistics reported by the Florida Association of Realtors. Single family home sales in Fort Myers and Cape Coral were down compared to October of 2006, but that was last year’s market. We’re more interested in how the market is changing now, not what happened last year.
Many of last years sales were a result of sales in 2005. Closings today are more closely associated with sales recently as the backlog of builder inventory has been absorbed. In fact, most builders have sold off most all of their unsold inventory, and are now working on sales for new construction now. This is alleviating some of the downward pricing pressure on resales, which is a positive sign moving forward.
As you can see from the SW Florida Real Estate Homes Closed Graph, 2007 closed sales have rebounded and headed upward again. The same is true with 2007 prices, as evidenced by the SW Florida Real Estate Sales Prices 2005-2007 graph. If the trend continues it is possible we could catch 2006 numbers on both the sales price numbers and the closed sales numbers soon.
It appears that foreclosures will peak 2nd or 3rd quarter of 2008, which could be the final leg in the market correction. If true, 2008 should be a year of bouncing along the bottom with mild fluctuations up and down. The buyers buying window of opportunity looks like it may be greatest now through the next 6 months or so, then the pendulum will slowly swing back towards equlibrium. This swing will take some time, and because interest rates have recently swung lower, now may be the best time for the buyers.
The US currency is also making the US real estate market attractive to foreigners who also will be competing to buy some of these properties.