NBC Today Show Interviews Ellis Team in Fort Myers
The Ellis Team was featured on the NBC Today Show regarding the presidential election. Florida has been identified as a battleground state, and the housing market will play a vital role in how people select the next president. The Fort Myers, Cape Coral, and Lehigh Acres area have been identified as the epicenter of what happened in Florida, and NBC wanted to come here and report on what is happening today.
Click here to watch the viddeo. The good news is that home sales were up 80% over July 2007 numbers and up 41% over August 2007 numbers, so even though prices are lower, buyers are back in the market scooping up properties because they are affordable.
Foreclosures have been highest in Cape Coral and Lehigh Acres where speculators built many homes in hopes of flipping to other investors or end users, but the speculators overbuilt for the current demand. Fort Myers has been hit with some foreclosures, but nothing like the Cape Coral and Lehigh Acres area. For detailed statistics on the SW Florida housing market, visit our housing statistics page.
The Florida Association of Realtors released official home and condo sales numbers for the month of August. Median sale prices were down 41% for single family homes in the Fort Myers Cape Coral area from last year. See SW Florida Real Estate Sale Prices 2005-2008 and were down 5.16% from July’s numbers. See Month Over Month % Price Change Chart Fort Myers Cape Coral Florida.
Median home sale prices in Cape Coral and Fort Myers have fallen 30.84% in three short months, from a median price of $212,400 in May to a median price of $146,900 in August. Home sales were up 31% over last year with 684 sales this year Vs. 520 last year, but home sales were down 11% from July 2008 numbers. Financing has become increasingly difficult for many homebuyers. Even though affordability is back in the market, many good credit homebuyers cannot qualify due to changing underwriting standards and amidst a capital crunch on Wall Street.
It’s also important to note that foreclosures are driving the median home sales price down more so in areas with higher concentration of foreclosures, like Lehigh Acres and Cape Coral. Fort Myers has not see the concentrated number of foreclosures like the previous two areas, and home prices have not suffered as much in many areas in Fort Myers because of that.
Anywhere we saw rampant speculation building; we saw rampant cases of investors/speculators walking away from their investment. Most of these homes were built in 2005 and 2006 with no end user in mind. The speculators were convinced they’d buy as many houses as the banks would lend money on and flip them to a buyer or another speculator for large profits. This strategy worked until we ran out of bigger fools, and the whole strategy came crashing down, taking lenders with them, as well as legitimate end users who bought in that time frame.
Now banks and Wall Street are in trouble and asking the taxpayer for a bailout. Most people are strongly against this idea, and yet the government is probably going to have to get involved in some capacity whether we like it or not to protect a domino effect of financial institutions from crumbling under their past poor decisions.
It’s not right, but it is where we’re at today, and unfortunately we may all have to pay for the sins of others.
NBC News called and asked if the Ellis Team could appear on the Today Show Tuesday September 23. The show will feature Brett Ellis talking about the SW Florida real estate market. NBC noted that Lee County Florida, particularly Cape Coral and Lehigh Acres has led the nation in foreclosures and is ground zero for the hosuing crisis. Florida is a battleground state for this year’s presidential election. The Today Show was in Pennsylvania on Monday and will be live from Tampa and Fort Myers on Tuesday, specifically from Lehigh Acres.
Also scheduled to appear on the show is one of the Presidential candidates, Florida Governor Charlie Crist, Tampa Bay Star Ronde Barber, and the show will unveil a new NBC News poll focusing on Florida issues.
The Florida segment from Fort Myers should occur in the 7:00-7:30 time slot ET. Brett Ellis is an agent with The Ellis Team at RE/MAX Realty Group in Fort Myers Florida.
This week’s special guest on The Future of Real Estate will be Kristan Cole, a top agent in North America from Wasilla Alaska and lifelong friend of Alaska Governor Sarah Palin.
The show can be heard on WINK Am 1240 in Fort Myers and WINK AM 1270 in Naples and Marco Island Saturdays at 11:00 AM. It is also broadcast Live over the Internet at Wink’s website, and can be heard over he Internet on our Topagent website.
We’ll ask Kristan what the Governor is really like in person, and ask her to clear up some questions that have arisen since the Governor has been named vice presidential candidate. We’ll ask how effective she’s been in Alaska, and what Alaskan’s think about drilling for oil, and more. It will be an hour packed information gathering show. Kristan is the former Miss Alaska and competed with Sarah in pageants, as well as growing up with her in grade school. Kristan also has 5 children, and shares that common bond with the Governor.
The Future of Real Estate is brought to you each week by The Ellis Team at RE/MAX Realty Group, SW Florida’s top agents.
Who knew people actually wanted to tune in and watch a short video each week on what’s happening in the SW Florida real estate market? The Fort Myers and Cape Coral market is changing rapidly, so I guess everyone is just trying to get a handle on what’s really happening and the trends we’re seeing on the streets.
Watch out 9-15-08 Fort Myers Florida Real Estate Update here presented by The Ellis Team at RE/MAX Realty Group in Fort Myers Florida. This started out as a test a few weeks ago and people actually called and complained we didn’t post one last week. Last week we were really busy writing new contracts, listing new properties, and keeping existing deals together. FInancing has become increasingingly difficult to obtain, and lenders are updating their files just before closing and asking more questions, which is causing delays. Add to that a shaky capital market, and you’ve got chaos in a moments notice, so sometimes we’re busy fighting fires. Keep in mind helping consumers buy and sell real estate is our primary business, and even though we enjoy educating consumers and the media as to what’s really happening in real time, sometimes we have to fight the fires first so to speak.
Hope you enjoy this week’s video. It is low budget (Free) so hopefully you’ll get something out of the content and not the production quality.
The latest Fort Myers Cape Coral SW Florida real estate Current Market Index has been released today and the overall Fort Myers Cape Coral housing index numbers fell to 7.75, from 7.88 the month prior. Cape Coral again led the way as Cape’s index fell to 6.38 while Fort Myers stands at 13.76. The lower the number the more favorable it is for sellers, and the higher the number the more favorable for buyers.
Current Market Index for Fort Myers Cape Coral Area
Lee County listing inventory for single family homes remained steady at 15,530 up a mere 7 homes from last month, and pending sales increased to 1,617, up from 1,546 in August. The overall Lee County Florida Current Market Index is at 9.60 in September, down from 10.04 in August. The September condo index stands at 20.21, up from 19.27 in August.
These numbers tell us the overall market is basically holding steady to slightly improving since August, and should bode well for closings in future months. It also tells us that so far the market has been absorbing the influx of foreclosures and selling them as they are not adding to inventory supply. This is another positive sign as the local SW Florida real estate market would be in trouble if the foreclosure activity added to inventory supplies. The large number of foreclosures is however keeping the supply where it is and preventing it from declining.
We thought we’d try something new, so we just filmed a short video explaining what is happening in the local Fort Myers real estate market. If viewers like it, we could do something like this weekly. The video is not anything special and certainly not broadcast quality. It was done on the fly with a small digital camera as more of a test to see how it would turn out, and if viewers would like it. We don’t like the sound quality although it is certainly legible. Upon further review we did find it is much better when you select watch in high quality. This video is presented by The Ellis Team, RE/MAX Realty Group in Fort Myers Florida
Send us your thoughts on the idea in a comment, either on this blog or directly in the video and we’ll make changes as necessary. If nothing else it was a fun idea with potential.
Click here to search the entire Southwest Florida MLS.
Late last week we released two additional charts containing the SW Florida real estate sales numbers, as well as the entire state of Florida. The Fort Myers Single Family Homes chart shows the Fort Myers and Cape Coral home sales up 80% over last year, as well as single family home sales for the entire state of Florida. The Fort Myers Cape Coral Condo Sales chart shows the Fort Myers and Cape Coral July 2008 sales as compared to July of 2007, as well as the entire state of Florida.
Each month the Florida Association of Realtors releases official sales numbers for Fort Myers real estate, Cape Coral real estate, and several other metropolitan areas.
July 2008 SW Florida real estate sales numbers were released today by the Florida Association of Realtors which includes data for Fort Myers and Cape Coral real estate. The latest data shows a home buying frenzy as single family home sales in Fort Myers and Cape Coral were up 80% over last year’s numbers. From the SW Florida Real Estate Homes Closed 2005-2008 chart, you can see home sales surpassed both 2006 and 2007 levels for the month of July. Last July there were 426 single family home sales and this July there 768 home sales. Condo sales in SW Florida increased 35% from 129 last year to 174 this year.
Median single family home sale prices in Fort Myers and Cape Coral dropped 37% from $246,100 last year to $154,900 this year. Median sale prices dropped 10% in July from June 2008 levels, and have dropped about 27% in the last two months alone. See SW Florida Real Estate Month Over Month Prices chart. Our SW Florida Real Estate Sale Prices 2005-2008 chart illustrates sales price trends for the last 4 years.
Be careful not to judge the overall market by the median price, as foreclosures are skewing the data downward in the lower price end of the market. While it is possible that multiple market segments are dropping to some degree, we really don’t see all market segments dropping to the degree the median price is. Home buyers are jumping in with both feet as they have found affordability back in the market.
We believe home sales, while at a frenzied pace right now, would actually be stronger if financing wasn’t such an issue for homebuyers. Lenders have certainly tightened the screws, and to some extent have caused the market to decline due to tougher underwriting standards. We are not arguing as to whether the banks are right or wrong, as each lender has their own specific situation to deal with and less money to lend, but it is a fact that sales are being curtailed due to tighter lending policies.
Nationally pending home sales numbers have been stronger, which hopefully will be a good sign for the future as well. We’ll keep reporting what we’re seeing in the local SW Florida real estate market, so tay tuned. Be sure to check our Fort Myers real estate website for updates on the market as well. You might also like our Housing Statistics webpage.
Click here to Search the Entire SW Florida real estate MLS. You can also view Ellis Team Virtual Tours of our listed properties. Feel free to visit our Bank Owned Bargains webpage for SW Florida bank foreclosures, and don’t forget our weekly radio show entitled “The Future of Real Estate” which you can listen to online.
Brett was recently interviewed on TV regarding what caused the local SW Florida foreclosure crisis. Click here to watch that interview.
The August SW Florida Real Estate Current Market Index is out for Fort Myers, Cape Coral and Lee County real estate, and as you can tell, it’s been fairly level but weakening slightly, which should lead to strong sales numbers going forward, but not quite as strong as we saw in the summer months.
The official index climbs slighty to 7.88, up from 7.51 the month prior. The Index consists of Fort Myers and Cape Coral combined. The overall Lee County index stands at 10.04 for single family homes and 19.27 for condos this month. Fort Myers single family homes index is 12.89 and Cape Coral is 6.62, so Cape Coral is definitely the hottest part of the county for sales compared to inventory levels. Lehigh Acres numbers are reflected in the Lee County numbers. The graph depicts Fort Myers and Cape Coral real estate single family home sales index numbers.
We’re predicting sales to remain good, but cool off slightly. Financing is having an impact on current pending sales, and new sales will be tougher after October 1 when down payment assitance goes away.
Fortunately we do have some homes listed that are foreclosures and the credit union is willing to finance with only 2% down, and will offer low rates to buyers with less than perfect credit, so this is a very good program for buyers who may get squeezed out of qualifying or who cannot come up with the minimum down payment due to the new financing rules.