ORLANDO, FL - Florida's housing market wrapped up 2014 with more closed sales, more new listings and higher median prices compared to the year before, according to the latest housing data released by Florida Realtors.
"In December and throughout 2014, we've seen positive signs that Florida's housing sector is on a steady, sustainable path," said 2015 Florida Realtors President Andrew Barbar, a broker with Keller Williams Realty Services in Boca Raton. "Sales are moving at a steady, moderate pace and home prices are stabilizing. Florida's economy continues to grow, more jobs are being created and mortgage interest rates remain at historically low levels, which will help drive the state's housing market forward in 2015."
Statewide closed sales of existing single-family homes totaled 22,414 in December, up 15.8 percent compared to the year-ago figure, according to data from Florida Realtors Industry Data and Analysis department in partnership with local Realtor boards/associations. Closed sales typically occur 30 to 90 days after sales contracts are written.
New listings of single-family homes for sale last month reached 24,840, up 2.9 percent year-to-year. Meanwhile, the statewide median sales price for existing single-family homes in December was $185,000, up 6.9 percent from the previous year. December marked the 37th month in a row that statewide median sales prices for both single-family homes and townhome-condo properties rose year-over-year.
According to the National Association of Realtors® (NAR), the national median sales price for existing single-family homes in November 2014 was $206,200, up 5.6 percent from the same month a year ago. In California, the statewide median sales price for single-family existing homes in November was $445,280; in Massachusetts, it was $330,000; in Maryland, it was $250,424; and in New York, it was $227,500. The median is the midpoint; half the homes sold for more, half for less.
Looking at Florida's year-to-year comparison for sales of townhouse-condos, a total of 9,466 units sold statewide last month, up 11.3 percent compared to December 2013. Meanwhile, new listings of townhome-condos reached 12,438 last month, up 3.4 percent year-to-year. The statewide median for townhouse-condo properties was $149,000, up 8.4 percent over the previous year. NAR reported that the national median existing condo price in November 2014 was $199,000.
"The December numbers are strongly positive for both the single-family and condo markets," said Florida Realtors Chief Economist Dr. John Tuccillo. "We are seeing the steady and sustainable growth that has characterized the market the entire year continuing as the year ends. Of particular note is the inventory levels in the balanced market range: We're keeping a close eye on the lack of inventory in the lower price ranges, but by and large, the market is in very good shape."
Statewide closed sales of existing single-family homes totaled 244,543 in 2014, up 8.1 percent compared to the 2013 figure, according to data from Florida Realtors Industry Data and Analysis department in partnership with local Realtor boards/associations.
New listings for existing single-family homes rose 7.4 percent in 2014 compared to 2013. The statewide median sales price for single-family existing homes in 2014 was $178,000, up 5.3 percent from the previous year.
Looking at Florida's year-to-year comparison for sales of townhouse-condos, a total of 108,354 units sold statewide in 2014, down slightly (-1.2 percent) from 2013. The closed sales data reflected fewer short sales in 2014 compared to the previous year: Short sales for condo-townhouse properties declined 58.2 percent while short sales for single-family homes dropped 50.7 percent.
New listings for townhouse-condos for the year increased 2.2 percent compared to a year ago. The statewide median for townhouse-condo properties in 2014 was $140,000, up 9.8 percent over the previous year.
At the end of 2014 and also for December 2014, inventory for single-family homes stood at a 5.2-months' supply, while inventory for townhouse-condo properties was at a 5.9-months' supply, according to Florida Realtors.
Florida Realtors Chief Economist Dr. John Tuccillo said, "We close the books on 2014 on a very positive note. The year marks the transition of the Florida real estate market from a rapid recovery to a path of steady growth. Virtually all the metrics for the market are moving in the right direction at levels that can be sustained."
The interest rate for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 4.17 percent for 2014, up from the previous year's average of 3.98 percent, according to Freddie Mac.
To see the full statewide housing activity reports, go to Florida Realtors Media Center.