Home Prices In Broward Palm Beach Counties Up 2 Percent

Dated: November 24 2014

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Housing isn't as hot as it was last year, but the October figures show the market is still vibrant.The median price for existing single-family homes in both Broward and Palm Beach counties was $275,000, 2 percent higher than a year ago, local Realtor boards said Thursday.In Broward, 1,393 homes traded hands, up 15 percent from October 2013, according to the Greater Fort Lauderdale Realtors.

Sales in Palm Beach County rose 19 percent, to 1,487, said the Realtors Association of the Palm Beaches.A year ago, an investor-driven frenzy included double-digit price increases, multiple offers and bidding wars galore. Now, more sales are going to traditional buyers, and the market is settling into a sustainable pace, analysts say."The average price increase on a single-family home is in the 3 to 4 percent range," said David Dabby, a South Florida housing consultant. "When you get spikes, as we've had over the years, that always leads to problems. You get recessions because people can't afford the homes anymore."

Howard Elfman, president-elect of Greater Fort Lauderdale Realtors and an agent in Broward and Palm Beach counties, said he's seeing robust demand from second-home buyers. And more first-time buyers are jumping into the market as the rental pool becomes more competitive, he said."First-time buyers are saying, 'My rent is going up,' " Elfman said. "When they take a look at what they're paying in rent, they may be able to buy a home and fix their costs."

Homes in both counties are taking a little longer to sell. The typical Broward home stayed on the market 45 days, up from 30 a year ago. In Palm Beach County, it was 55 days, compared with 50 last year at this time.In some areas, though, the market is as strong as ever.

Judy Trudel, an agent who sells in both counties, said buyers are still clamoring for homes in Lighthouse Point and the Imperial Point subdivision of Fort Lauderdale.
The Boca Square and Palm Beach Farms neighborhoods in eastern Boca Raton are also in demand, she said.
"When we see new listings, I call my buyers and say, 'Let's meet at this house and bring your checkbook,' " Trudel said.The existing condominium markets in Broward and Palm Beach counties also posted more sales and higher prices compared with a year ago.Broward's median condo price in October was $119,900, up 3 percent.
In Palm Beach County, the median increased 9 percent to $130,000. The median means half of the properties sold for more, half for less.
Statewide, the median price for single-family homes last month was $177,000, up 5 percent, according to the Florida Realtors trade group. It was the 35th consecutive month that the median rose from the year before.
John Tuccillo, chief economist for Florida Realtors, said in a statement that snowbirds, worried about another harsh winter, may arrive early this year to buy homes before the seasonal push."Everything appears to be moving in the right direction, against a background of moderate and sustainable price changes," he said.
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Angelo F. Terrizzi Jr.

I am a New England native, born and raised in the Boston area. Growing up, I was always involved with extra-curricular activities through school and church. I spent 30+ years in Business and later in ....

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