Real Estate Market Update

September 22, 2021

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“Fear does not stop death. It stops life. And worrying does not take away tomorrow’s troubles. It takes away today’s peace.” Unknown

It is easy to agree with the truth of this quote, but much harder to live it.

 

The Northeast Florida Association of Realtors market stats for August continue to show rising prices, continued high buyer demand, and low inventories of available homes. The most recent trend we are seeing is double-digit rent increases.

 

“Put simply, August trends suggest rents are making up for lost time. Rents remained low during some of the worst months of the pandemic, growing at a sub-2% pace from September 2020 to March 2021, which is also when for-sale home prices were growing by double-digits,” said Realtor.com Chief Economist Danielle Hale.

 

Many buyers are unable to find a suitable home to purchase and have been forced into the rental market. According to Apartment List, rents in Jacksonville have risen 19.7% since August 2020, and 4.4% since July 2021.

 

There were 3,787 new listings in August, up 5.7% from last August and 6.7% year-to-date. The builders are also adding more homes. Industry sources predict an 11% to 12% increase in housing starts for 2021 or about 1.55 million units. That would be up from 1.38 million housing starts in 2020, which was a 7% increase over 2019. (Business Journal article) Builders are still being delayed by materials like windows and appliances and labor shortages.

 

The good news for buyers is that the frenzy of competitiveness of the spring market has cooled a bit. Some sellers are still pricing their homes very high, but many buyers are no longer willing to pay the prices they were during the spring and the homes are sitting or the sellers are reducing the price. While 41.0% of homes sold over list price, that is down from 44.8% in July.

 

There were 3,424 pending sales down 2.0% from last August, but up 12.4% year-to-date. Closed sales of 3,200 were down 3.1% from last August, but up 15.6% year-to-date.

 

The median sales price of $300,000 is up around 14% month-over-month and year-to-date. The average sales price of $362,699 is up 14.2% month-over-month and 17.7% year-to-date.

 

There are 4,651 homes available for sale which is down 37.2% from last August and we have 1.4 months of supply available. Five to six months is a balanced market.

 

While we are seeing more homes come available, the buyer demand remains very strong. We should continue to see prices increase, multiple offers, and increased rental rates.

 

Please come join us on October 21st for our major fundraiser, Davidson Cares Clay Day. We support Builders Care, St. Augustine Youth Services, and Investing in Kids. Go to DavidsonCares.com and register or buy a raffle ticket for one of our great prizes.

 

We appreciate your support and referrals. Please let us know if we can assist you in any way.

Real Estate Market Update

May 20, 2021

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“You just can’t beat the person who never gives up.” Babe Ruth

 

If you want to buy a home in today’s market, you should listen to Babe Ruth. Most buyers are having to be persistent and make offers on several homes before they get a home under contract.

 

The Northeast Florida Association of Realtors market stats for April continue to show high demand for homes and limited supply which is causing price increases.

 

There were 3,615 pending sales in April which is up 52% over last April; however last April COVID was a factor in less contracts being written. The year-to-date numbers for pending sales are up 27% so you can see there is increased demand in the four-month period.

 

There were 3,177 closed sales in April which is a 27% increase month-over-month and 20% year-to-date.

 

The median sales price is $284,941 which is up 14% over last month and 12.5% year-to-date. The average sales price is $357,438 which is up 20.5% over last month and 18% year-to-date.

 

The most staggering statistic to me was the percent of properties sold over list price. For the properties that closed in April, 36.9% sold over list price. That is a 142.8% increase over April 2020. The average for the previous 12 months was 13.3% selling over list price.

 

On the supply side, there were 3,991 available homes for sale at the end of April which is down 58% from last April and there are 1.2 months supply of homes for sale. A balanced market is 5 to 6 months.

 

There may be better news coming to help with supply. A survey by Realtor.com indicated more sellers plan to put their homes on the market. Another survey by NerdWallet of 2,127 homeowners shows 1 in 6 (17%) plans on selling their home in the next 18 months. In fact, 45% of those planning to sell say higher asking prices and lower inventory have caused them to sell earlier than initially planned.

 

NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun predicts an increase in the 30-year fixed mortgage interest rate to an average of 3.2% in 2021. “As mortgage rates increase, the frenzied multiple-offer situation will become less prevalent by year’s end, as affordability challenges squeeze out some buyers and more inventory reaches the market,” Yun predicts.

 

“With more inventory and some easing in demand, home prices are expected to shift to mid-single-digit appreciation by the fourth quarter and in 2022,” Yun says. He predicts that:

· Median existing-home sales price will increase 7% in 2021

· Existing-home sales will grow by 10% as more homes reach the market

· New home sales will increase by 20%

 

These predictions are great news. In the meantime, if you are interested in buying or selling, please contact a Realtor with knowledge of the market. We would love to help you navigate these interesting times.

4 Ways to Sweeten the Deal When Buying a Home

May 5, 2021

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The real estate market is unlike anything we’ve seen before. Inventory is low, demand is high, and homes are flying off the market! “With the current market conditions, listings are receiving multiple offers and buyers need to be ready to act fast with their best offer when they see a listing they love,” shares Davidson Realty President, Sherry Davidson. In such an intensely competitive market, trust the real estate experts at Davidson Realty to help you put your best foot forward with these strategies. 

 

Get Pre-Approved for a Mortgage

The first thing you should do when you decide to purchase a home is obtain a pre-approval letter. A pre-approval letter not only states what a lender is willing to lend to you but shows the seller you are serious and prepared to purchase a home. A pre-approval letter shows legitimacy and a sign of good faith that they can afford to buy the home. Sellers are more likely to select an offer that is pre-approved than one that is not. 

 

Eliminate Contingencies

A clean offer is extremely attractive to sellers. “Any contingencies you have in your offer could be a negative to the seller. Sellers want a low risk and speedy closing,” shares Sherry. Appraisals are often a major cause of home sales falling through. Eliminating this step allows for a smooth sale process with minimal chance of things going wrong. As the buyer, you are effectively taking the risk off the home seller and putting it on to yourself. 

 

Make an All-Cash Offer

All-Cash offers provide the unique opportunity of keeping the sale primarily between the buyer and the seller. Cash offers tend to be stronger than offers utilizing traditional financing because they are less risky for the seller. With a cash sale, no appraisal is necessary since there is no mortgage lender involved. The absence of a mortgage lender also allows for a quicker closing. A fast timeline is advantageous for sellers because the sooner they close, the sooner they get paid.  

 

Be Flexible

Including a flexible timeline in your offer can go a long way with sellers. Depending on the sellers’ situation they may need more or less time in the home than the traditional 30-day closing period. If you are not in a hurry to move, being as adaptable as possible will be to your advantage as the sellers will then be able to decide what works best for them. This can go a long way, especially if competing offers come with strict deadlines. 

 

If you are ready to begin the search for your next home, call Davidson Realty today to help you get started. 

REAL ESTATE MARKET UPDATE

April 23, 2021

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“God could not be everywhere, and therefore he made mothers.” Rudyard Kipling

 

I wish every mother a Happy Mother’s Day!

 

The Northeast Florida Association of Realtors market stats for March shows 3,782 homes available for sale compared to 9,484 last March, a 60% reduction. It appears the low supply of homes for sale, high buyer demand and rising prices will be with us for several years.

 

The single-family home for sale inventory peaked in 2007 with about 3.7 million homes available nationally and has been dropping since then to 1.07 million homes currently.

 

A great article from The Mecklenburg Times cites the reason for continued buyer demand as low household formation rates following the Great Recession. If the historical household formation rate had continued after the recession, there would have been 5.7 million more households formed.

 

“The mid-2000s financial collapse began a domino effect. Roughly $6 trillion in real estate equity vanished during the housing crash, impacting the ability of many families to pass down wealth to their children. Young people who finished school around the late 2000s faced a soft job market, which can have long-lasting effects on a person’s finances and their ability to start a new household. Previous Zillow research has shown it takes about six years for homeownership rates of those who graduated college during a recession to catch up with those who graduated during better economic times.”

 

The last two years had shown that when the economy is good and most Americans have access to decent jobs, more of them are able to find a home of their own. More Millennials are turning 33 which has been the age most are marrying and starting families. This trend should continue rising for the next three to four years. Add to this the retiring Baby Boomers who are downsizing and the COVID-related moves where people can work from anywhere. The demand should continue for several more years at least.

 

The supply is tight and the demand is strong, so prices are rising. The median sales price is $274,900 up 12.7% over last March. The average sales price is $344,643, up 20.4%. Many buyers are offering to pay more than list price to get the offer accepted among multiple offers. The percent of properties sold over list price spiked 102.1%. In March 2020 14.2% of properties sold over list price and in March 2021 28.7% paid over list price.

 

It is a seller’s market, so if you are considering selling, we are happy to assist you. If you are interested in buying, we are finding ways to get offers accepted. Thank you for your continued trust and please let us know if we can help in any way. Happy Mother’s Day!

Real Estate Market Update

March 19, 2021

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“Four things for success: work and pray, think and believe.” Norman Vincent Peale

 

As we roll into the spring real estate market, there is more demand and less supply of homes than I have ever seen including the 2004 to 2006 timeframe. The Northeast Florida Association of Realtors market stats tell the story.

 

The pending sales of 3,063 are 11.4% higher than last February. The closed sales of 2,542 are up 5.9%. The new listings for February of 2,955 are down 13.5%.

 

There are 3,931 homes available for sale in February, down 56.1% from the 8,945 homes last February. The months supply of inventory is 1.3 months, down 60.6% from 3.3 months last February.

 

With the increased demand and diminishing supply, the prices continue to rise. The average sales price is up 14.1% in February compared to last February and the median price is up 11.8%. A recent article in the Jacksonville Business Journal says Redfin reports that Jacksonville leads the nation in rising housing market value. “The study from Seattle-based online real estate brokerage Redfin Corp. pointed to a 21.1% increase in the total value of homes in the Jacksonville metro between February 2020 and February 2021 – the largest increase in the nation.” They also pointed out that houses in our area remain below the national median price. “The median price here of $270,477 compared to $342,326 for the entire country.”

 

Florida Realtors Chief Economist, Dr. Brad O’Connor is predicting all of 2021 to be a great real estate market in Florida. He quoted economist from Realtors, Builders, Mortgage Bankers, Core Logic and more all predicting interest rates at year end between 3% and 3.6%. He says if rates rise too quickly the demand would be strong but we might be closer to historical norms than the market we are seeing now.

 

We are seeing fewer new listings as mentioned above. This may be related to COVID fears or concerns of where you can buy if you sell your home at a great price. The builders are adding homes as quickly as possible. The building permits issued for the Jacksonville MSA for January and February 2021 were 2,393 compared to 1,723 for the same period in 2020 for a 39% increase.

 

If you are buying or selling, you need advice from a trusted agent. The professional agents are finding ways to get offers accepted for buyers and know the best way to handle multiple offers for sellers. Please let us know if we can be of service.

 

Enjoy our beautiful spring weather, March Madness, Baseball Spring Training, our beaches and river. I wish you a Happy Easter!

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