Pending home sales continue to climb
Its time again to evaluate just what is going on with real estate here in the Northern Palm Beaches. The table is being set for higher home prices in Jupiter and the neighboring communities. Seasonal visitors have been buying and it is welcome relief to those wanting prices to climb higher. They will be….at least for the next couple months. Then we start looking into macro-economic issues like the amazing strength our US dollar is showing throughout the world. And what that might just do to interest rates. And foreign investment in Florida real estate.
As of March 15th, pending home sales in Jupiter and her neighboring communities continue to climb. Up almost 11% over the past month, up almost 14% from year ago numbers, up 24% from our 12 month moving average. These numbers are very strong, historical increases in sales. The increase in pending homes sales in the Northern Palm Beaches has been an astronomical 55.7% in just two months. This just doesn’t happen. Or it never did until now.
This growth cannot continue forever but the longer it does the higher prices will move in the short term. As of March 15th, home inventory in Jupiter and the Northern Palm Beaches moved lower for the 2nd straight month and we just aren’t seeing enough homes added to keep up with the increase in demand. Prices are moving higher from here. The median condominium price in the Jupiter area hasn’t risen in 5 months. But that is about to change. Median single family home prices in Jupiter rose as of March 1st after not moving for almost a year. They are going to rise some more.
A couple signs that the market is changing are cash sales which declined for the 1st time in 4 months as of March 1st. Even more telling is the lack of mega-luxury home sales, those with a price tag of at least $1,000,000. Down as of March 1st to the lowest levels we have seen since October of 2012. Neither signals good news on the road ahead but for now it just hasn’t made any difference. But if these trends continue it will.
Interest rates moved lower last week even with the strengthening dollar. A stronger US dollar is not necessarily a good thing for real estate. Foreign investment in Jupiter area homes can stall and perhaps that is part of why we are seeing $1M home sales off. A stronger US dollar might also push the Fed ahead with interest rate hikes. But then there is that pesky national debt which is well above 18 trillion dollars and climbing. No doubt a very loud and obnoxious campaign for our next President is about to get started and the talk of the “fiscal cliff” may be back in the news. But home prices in Jupiter will be heading higher for at least a couple more months. Then we will start to look at these macro-economic factors. Always interesting, always fun.
Paradise Sharks Real Estate