Home buyers in the Jupiter area are enjoying more choices than they have had for quite a while. Home inventory levels are the highest we have seen in 3 years and interest rates have been treading water at historically low levels. Buyers have been acting and taking advantage of both of these trends. Jupiter pending home sales, and those throughout the Northern Palm Beaches, have put in another strong performance for the first half of March.
As of March 15th, pending home sales in the Northern Palm Beaches are up 7.8% since the first of the month and up 15.5% over the past 30 days. Over the same time periods in 2016 pending home sales in the area were up 4.1% and 17.2% so we are in line with last years’ performance. Keep in mind that last year total home sales in the Jupiter area were the 2nd highest we have ever seen. Through the end of February more home sales have closed in the Northern Palm Beaches this year.
We are experiencing quite an amazing turnaround as just 2 months ago pending home sales were at the worst levels we had seen in years. Since then, pending home sales in the Jupiter area are up a dramatic 61%. In just two months, we have gone from wondering where the buyers were, to being on track for potentially a record breaking year of home sales.
Prices have been trending lower for months on both single family homes and condominiums. In Jupiter, at this moment, there are 824 properties available for sale. Over the last week 100 of them have reduced their list prices. Buyers are shopping for value and prices are still dropping. Over 12% of all home sellers in Jupiter have lowered their list prices over the past week. With pending home sales up over 60% in two months such a large percentage of sellers would not be lowering their prices unless they were over priced. The odds are many still are, and on the front lines buyers are still very, very price conscious.
Inventory levels had been climbing higher for 6 straight months but as of March 15th we have finally seen a decline. Well, not much of a decline, with 1 fewer unit than a month ago but at least we are seeing the number of available homes leveling off. This trend, it if continues, should provide some support for prices.
The other metric we are closely watching this week is interest rates as the Fed is meeting and all signs point to higher interest rates ahead. We have now been threatened with this for years and at some point the manipulation will have to end. As of this morning, interest rates on a 30 year conforming loan are back up to 4.2%; the highest levels we have seen since July 2105. As our national debt is about ready to hit $20 trillion dollars interest on that amount is scary and at higher rates even scarier. President Trump seems to be reigning in government spending and it is certainly going to be an interesting year ahead in Washington.
The value of a families’ home is typically a huge factor in their overall financial picture. Timing is everything and with affordability a huge factor in the Northern Palm Beaches, anyone buying or selling, needs a broker on their team that can understand their goals and help meet them. Seek knowledge, interview at least three brokers and ask direct questions. Find a broker you trust, one that wants to educate you, and if you haven’t found them, keep interviewing. If you are anywhere in Palm Beach or Martin County, Paradise Sharks would love the opportunity to earn your business and you can reach us anytime at 561.308.0175 or firstname.lastname@example.org for a complimentary interview.