Spring buying season not as robust as last year
No one will argue that the local real estate market has not been good here in the northern Palm Beach Country region. Certainly not nearly as strong as we were last year at this point but good. Our mid month check up on homes under contract had given us increased numbers each month since January 15th. Three months in a row we had increases of 15%, 12% and 8%. Solid numbers bringing us back from an 8 month period when the market truly was in a funk.
No one metric does more to tells us where actual home sales levels will be over the next 90 days. A strong pending home report virtually guarantees strong sales numbers in the two months ahead. So it is with great anticipation each day as I watch the changes as we know where the market is headed. Believe me, I would love to be bringing you another solid increase in homes under contract for the period ending May 15th but it just didn't happen. Pending homes sales gave back some of the recent gains dropping 2% since our April 15th report. Nothing earth shattering and quite frankly we can expect a pause after the solid gains we have seen over the previous 90 days.
However, we continue to see a pattern where the market remains far below the strength we enjoyed last year at this time. As of today, homes under contract remain 17% below the numbers we reported at this juncture in 2013. Last year on May 15th we experienced a 1% drop from the previous month and that is when the "great slide" started. We then went for 8 long months before a meaningful correction.
If a similar market stall comes our way this year things could get very ugly indeed. Watch closely at the information available in any neighborhood that you are considering a sale or purchase as summer approaches. Things are changing and we are hoping that the summer months improve over last years performance. If not, watch for recent price increases to sputter as well. Always interesting, always fun.
Paradise Sharks Real Estate