Seasonal home buying in the Northern Palm Beaches started a bit late this year; January 15th to be exact. Two and a half months later the buying continues and it has been a very strong season for real estate sales. Consider that back in the middle of January, pending home sales in the area were at the worst levels we had seen in years. Here we are 10 weeks later, and the number of homes under contract in the Jupiter area has soared almost 70%.
When demand perks up like that, we look for prices to start moving higher, but so far little movement on median prices for single family homes or condominiums. Single family home prices moved higher during March and are back up to the best levels we have seen since October. Still, there has been little overall movement in the median single family home price in the Jupiter area since February of 2016. At this moment, the price of that median home is still about 11% below the bloated, “pre-bubble” highs we saw back in 2005.
In the condominium market, median prices in the Northern Palm Beaches were also up a bit in March. Median prices in this segment have also fluctuated a bit but have traded in a pretty tight range and are essentially unchanged over the past 10 months. Looking at historical prices, today’s median condo price is still about 25% below the highs we hit a dozen years ago.
Inventory levels had been soaring locally despite what you may be reading about national, or state wide trends. On March 15th, we literally had more homes on the market than at any time over the past 36 months. Thankfully, as of April 1st, we have seen the first meaningful inventory reduction in seven months. If home prices are to move higher we either need buying to continue to show strength, inventory to keep declining, or both.
Your view of the real estate market in the Northern Palm Beaches is dependent on a number of factors, type of home, location, price point, condition. What your home will sell for is a different conversation. Paradise Sharks closely monitors 15 different market segments and if you are looking of the best performing market look at single family homes priced under $300,000. They are selling like hot cakes with inventory under one month. The worst performing segment is single family homes listed above $1,000,000 where inventory levels are at 14 months. But don’t think expensive real estate isn’t moving, as condominiums priced over $1,000,000 are the 4th hottest market segment in Jupiter right now. The only properties selling better are all listed under $300,000 in the single family home, town home and condominium classifications.
Location is equally important when looking at market strength. Over the past 2 weeks pending home sales in Hobe Sound are up 15% while just down the road in Juno Beach sales are down about 13%. About 9% of home sellers in the Jupiter area have lowered their list prices over the past week. We won’t see meaningful increases in prices until that trend comes to an end.
Lots of positive things in today’s market but also lots of questions. If you are looking for a great deal this week your odds are probably better in Juno Beach. If you are a seller and want top dollar let’s hope you are selling an entry level home in Hobe Sound. As always, education and making fully informed decisions is the key to success in any real estate market. Always interview at least three brokers and if Paradise Sharks can ever be of help in any way please feel free to contact us anytime at 561.308.0175 or firstname.lastname@example.org