Miami is continuing to buck the trend in the United States real estate market as sales and prices rise above the national average, the latest figures show.
Sales of existing single family homes in the Miami Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) increased 49% in August and sales of condominiums went up 60%, according to the data from the Miami Association of Realtors.
Nationally, sales of existing single family homes, town homes, condominiums, and co-ops increased 7.7% from the previous month and were 18.6% above August 2010, according to the National Association of Realtors (NAR).
‘The fact that home prices are rising despite distressed sales that account for the majority of sales is indicative of very positive trends in the Miami marketplace,’ said Jack Levine, 2011 Chairman of the Board of the Miami Association of Realtors.
‘If prices are rising for countywide figures that include distressed properties, strengthening would be that much greater if distressed listings were eliminated or reduced. We believe the Miami market in terms of pricing has bottomed,’ he explained.
The percentage of cash transactions increased to 62%, up 3% compared to the previous month. Cash sales accounted for 42% of single family and 76% of condominium closings. Nationally, all cash sales accounted for 29% of transactions.
The effect of short sales and foreclosures on the median and average sales prices for both single family homes and condominiums has lessened particularly in some areas of the county. In August, 56% of all closed residential sales in Miami-Dade County were distressed, including REOs and short sales, compared to 67% in August 2010 and 57% the previous month.
The median sales price of single family homes in August decreased a negligible 1% to $180,900 from a year earlier. The median sales price of condominiums increased 13% to $118,800.
‘Florida and South Florida are by far the top areas in the nation for international home buying activity,’ said 2011 Miami Association of Realtors Residential President Ralph De Martino.
‘Already a magnet for international and for second and vacation home buyers, Miami is now attracting domestic and foreign buyers who recognize that the market has bottomed, and prices are on the upswing,’ he added.
Across the state median sales prices increased 2% to $137,500 for single family homes and 12% to $91,100 for condominiums. The national median existing home price for all housing types was $168,300 in August, down 5.1% from August 2010.
The average sales prices for single family homes in Miami-Dade County increased 13.5% from $285,419 in August 2010 to $324,034 in August 2011. The average sales price for condominiums increased 35% from $173,752 in August 2010 to $234,528 last month.
The inventory of residential listings in Miami-Dade County has dropped 40% from 25,679 to 15,405 active listings, in the last year. Compared to the previous month, the total inventory of homes dropped2% from 15,697. Since August 2008, existing housing inventory has decreased more than 66%, down from 43,100.
Total housing inventory nationally fell 3% to 3.58 million at the end of August.