September 2022 Market Report for Palm Beach County – By Amy Snook

There are many variables that make September results interesting! The final results and evaluation of the next few months are going to be critical to really ascertain and give guidance on our Palm Beach County market.

 

First, the week leading up to now, Ian, as you can imagine, caused a pause in most of Florida’s market – the path of the Hurricane was unclear and therefore most sellers and buyers chose to wait before taking any action on their real estate decisions.  Further, for any buyer under contract to close on a home in September, if they had not yet bound their new insurance policy, insurance agents were unable to complete the process therefore causing closings to be delayed. The above skewed, of course, new listings coming on market, buyers going under contract and closings for the month of September.

 

Another variable, though may also be the trend for our future, is that we are back to season in our market.   Historically and prior to our pandemic years, we saw a drop off in summer months and the market did not typically pick back up until we approached our season – October, November timeframe. For the past 3 years or so, we were strong 12 months of the year with many people desperately wanting to relocate or purchase a second home in south Florida.  The lifestyle we offer in Palm Beach County fueled the real estate market.  With September’s results showing a decrease in almost all categories across the board, we need to wonder if we are back to “seasons” of real estate in Florida or were we simply impacted by the Hurricane.

 

Yet another aspect is mortgage rates. Cash sales were down again this month which means more people are financing the homes they are buying.  With interest rates higher than we have seen in many, many years and the threat of continued increases in those rates, we know that people are looking at lower price points than they did one year ago, and others are simply not able to purchase or purchase what they want and are holding off for now.

 

All three (3) of the above variables impacted our September results, we will be closely monitoring the next few months to really ascertain whether we are back to prepandemic market seasons and how much the interest rate will impact our unique market.

 

With all of that said, Noreen and I had a very busy September with both listings and buyers going under contract. I share that because I do think it is worth mentioning – when homes are priced properly, and buyer expectations are also set upfront – homes move.     People still want to sell and people still want to buy but realistic expectations are critical and the market is clearly indicating this fact.

 

In EVERY price point which we evaluated, months of inventory crept up by at least one month – $600- $900 and then $1,000,000 and up – is officially in a balanced market – for $1,000,000 we are actually approaching (on the cusp) a buyer’s market – but from a recommendation perspective of our team – we caution anyone to get too confident and treat the $1,000,000 and up price point as a balanced market.  Too many factors impacted September results to change strategy at this point; however, we currently have the most inventory at every price point over any month in 2022.

 

I hesitate to share specific numbers as almost ¼ of our month was impacted by the Hurricane (Ian) and we don’t feel that these numbers are truly an indication of where our Palm Beach market truly stands – cash sales down, median and average price points down, new listings and new pending are down as well and inventory was up almost 68% from this time last year.

 

All of the above said, we are extremely confident that our market is still very, very attractive and is a highly sought-after place to live, work and play.  While this month we experienced a shift, we believe it was a temporary shift (as to the degree of which we shifted).   We will not continue, at this time, to see unsustainable growth in price points but we will see properties moving at price points higher than the pre-pandemic times.

 

Our greatest advice in this market, choose your real estate partner wisely😊

 

Amy

July 2022 Market Report for Palm Beach County – By Amy Snook

Based on June numbers, our Palm Beach County July market report is proving to be very interesting. If you watch, the media is touting doom and gloom for real estate around the country – and while things have definitely slowed from the frenetic pace that we’ve experienced over the past few years, the Palm Beach real estate market is far from doom and gloom. In fact, as we’ve stated in our past reports these last few months, when marketing properly and priced appropriately, homes are selling…period!

HOWEVER, our reality is that the market that “was” is not the same now. That market was unsustainable, and we all needed it to soften a bit. Inventory was lacking at all price levels but we now have more inventory! Demand is still high and with inventory increasing, Buyers have more choices. Now more than ever, when Buyers have options, Sellers need to pay more attention to how their home looks, how it is priced, and how it is marketed. If you have been reading our reports you know that one of the leading indicators of the market is inventory – if nothing new came to market – how many months would it take to “consume” all that is available – you also learned that a balanced market is 5-7 months of inventory; below 5 is a seller’s market and above 7 is a buyer’s market. While under $999,000 is still a Seller’s market – our months of 1 or 2 months of inventory has now reached 3 and 4 months of inventory – inching towards a balanced market. Over $1,000,000 – is sticking at 5 months – low end of balanced but nevertheless balanced.

So, what makes this interesting? Well, as expected, the higher interest rates have cooled the market (at varying price points), certainly hasn’t stopped the market but rather slowed it down. For the first time within the past year, June results show that year over year results have declined. As it relates to closings, last June happened to be higher than normal but we cannot ignore the fact that the astronomical increases have ceased. Closed sale numbers are similar to pre-pandemic numbers; however, prices are up substantially.

In Palm Beach County, prices remain strong but the price points are responding to the increase in inventory. There are simply more options for people. Driving around we see more signs – we see more price reductions – we have more competition.

 So, Buyers, this is the first month in sometime that we are reporting good news – there are more properties!

Sellers, it continues to be very good news for you as well. Buyers are still relocating to our area! Price properly, ensure marketing is firing on all cylinders and ensure you partner with a Realtor or Team who knows how to get you to the closing table. Given that there is more inventory, buyers may exercise their right to cancel under inspection. Experience and Finesse is needed to keep deals together .

Looking for the right partners? The Amy and Noreen Team of Lang Realty are ready to spend time with you, educating you on the market and rolling up our sleeves to continue doing what we do best!

Selecting the Right Agent to List Your Home

How to pick a listing agent when selling a home – it’s a critical life decision! What to look for? The ability to analyze the real estate market, price the listing, plan and execute a good strategy to sell your home… these are important. But there’s one more element to consider. Watch this quick video to get Noreen’s take on how to make this important choice.

Understanding How We Use “Comps” in Real Estate

 

Should A Seller Accept An Offer That Is Contingent Upon The Sale Of The Buyers Home?

Amy Snook answers the question: If a seller should accept an offer contingent upon the sale of the buyers home? Well, there are a lot of things to consider when this question is asked. Check out this video to hear what Amy has to say!

Communication is the Key to Successful Client Relationships

As real estate professionals, our goal is to ensure that our clients have the best experience when buying or selling a home. We, as real estate professionals, are in one of the few industries where competitors must work directly together to accomplish their goals.

From the initial showing all the way to closing we are side-by-side working through issues and ensuring that our respective clients have a wonderful experience. Why is this important?

Aside from providing a positive, stress-free experience for consumers – it can lead to referrals! There is no greater compliment than a referral from a past client! To have our phones ring is the key (no pun intended) to our success.

Click to read the full article By Noreen Payne

What repairs should you make to sell your home?

By: Amy Snook
Special to the Boca and Delray newspapers

When deciding to sell your home, what repairs or enhancements are most important for the sale? The answer varies and depends on many factors such as market conditions, age of home, competition, equity in the property, timeframe for sale and cost of repairs. There are two different aspects to analyze: Repairs and aesthetics.

Aesthetics is the simpler of the two—de-clutter, curb appeal, and painting are items that can easily be fixed. We all know that a potential buyer forms an opinion as soon as they pull up to your home, so pressure cleaning, gardening and lawn are important components of curb appeal if you want top dollar for your home!

If you are selling in a Seller’s market, you may choose to do fewer repairs/enhancements than a Seller who is selling in a Buyer’s market. In addition to the overall market conditions, an analysis of the conditions in your neighborhood such as how many homes are on the market, how long have they been on the market and what are the price points, are some of the factors you should consider. If there are many homes for sale in your neighborhood, you can expect a buyer to drive buy the various homes and compare which they may want to see.

Now for the more difficult decisions—repairs! When a potential buyer walks through a home, one of the areas they typically analyze is how well the home has been treated. If they see a leaky faucet, a rotted door jam, whether it is accurate on not, they assume there has been some neglect and start to really look for other areas to validate this assumption. Our recommendation is to fix the “easy,” low cost items that ensure a proper presentation to a buyer. Ensure each and every light bulb works and that they match, repair grout issues in the bathroom, replace dead or dying plants in the yard – these simple items make a big difference in a buyer’s mindset.

If your home is 35 years or older, the buyer will most likely need to do a “4 point” inspection in addition to the traditional inspection to even get insurance. A “Four Point Inspection” focuses only on four main areas of interest in a home: HVAC (Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning), Electrical wiring and panels, plumbing connections and fixtures and the roof.   For a home of this age, it may make sense to have your own presale inspection.

If you have old Federal Pacific Panels, please replace them before you list. It is difficult if not impossible for buyer’s to get insurance with these panels. Electrical issues scare a buyer so remove this obstacle before it even becomes one!

Roof—broken or missing roof tiles. This is another one of those areas that cause a buyer to pause and show concern. It is a lower cost and simple fix—so address this one up front. This contrasts to a roof that has exceeded its life expectancy or even a failing roof. This is a bigger issue and can impact “who” can even buy your home.

As for HVAC and plumbing—it depends. These are items to review on a case-by-case basis and together determine your strategy to address any issues. There are times that repair is the answer and other items that you can adjust as you negotiate a contract.

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PALM BEACH COUNTY REAL ESTATE MARKET REPORTS – May 2019

The All About Florida Homes Team of Keller Williams Realty has been busy all around from our Sellers and Buyers!

We could have told you the market had picked up before we even analyzed the market report from Florida Realtors.   While the market is behind last year to date – we are finally starting to see traction and the market starting to play catch up.

If you have been reading our market reports monthly,  you will have read (tirelessly I know) my rants about sellers’ and agents’ pricing on active versus sold comps.  Homes can be listed for any amount but what they sell for, and how long it takes, and how many reductions do make a difference.   We are seeing the market price where home sell  – hence the movement in the market.

If you have a good marketing strategy, take pictures strategically to show the attributes of the home, land and community, market to the consumer as well as fellow agents – and analyze the showings, feedback and competition – homes will sell!

The market from $300,000 to $600,000 seems to bounce monthly from a balanced market to a slight buyer or seller market depending upon inventory.  As we always say:

In a balanced market – where you come out of the gate (price, marketing et al) really, really matters.   It is not a race to market – it has to be done right!   

Homes in the $600,000 to $999,999 range remain in a balanced market this month so same rules apply as above.

The $1,000,000+ remains a buyers’ market – there is so much inventory and many are still overpriced.  If you are a seller, it is worth a real analysis of where homes have sold and how you are being marketed – BUT you also need to be patient.  There is a lot of competition, so ensure your home stands out and that you are priced right!

Contact us at (561) 571-2289 – or via amyandnoreen@allaboutfloridahomes.com – if we can provide you with any additional market data that will help inform your decisions! We are here to help – with no obligation.

Palm Beach County Local Market Update for May 2019 Monthly Market Detail May 2019 Townhouses and Condos Monthly Market Detail May 2019 Single Family Homes

From Florida Realtors: HUD Plans a “Verification Plan for Service Animals”

All stakeholders should be pleased to learn that HUD has a “verification plan for service animals” in the works.

(Note: The following is not legal advice, as we are not lawyers. If you have specific questions about disability accommodations of any kind as it relates to housing, we can introduce you to a lawyer in our network who can advise you.) 

According to this report from Florida Realtors, “Landlords and property managers are entitled to “reliable verification” of a tenant’s need for a service animal and can require proof beyond an online certification, a Department of Housing and Urban Development official said Tuesday at the Realtors® Legislative Meetings & Trade Expo in Washington, D.C.”

Florida landlords, tenants, Realtors, and all involved may be interested to hear that HUD also reports to be considering how “exotic” animals (like alligators!) fit into this equation.

We are glad to hear that HUD has this issue on the radar screen, and we look forward to guidance and clarification around service animals in housing. There is significant confusion around this issue on all fronts, and clarification will surely help everyone.

Most importantly, we’d love to see people with disabilities who need service animals be treated fairly and without discrimination. As an extension, we’d like to see the “cottage industry” referenced in this article (that has sprung up to take advantage of the confusion and sell certificates) dealt with.

We’d also like to have investors who own rental properties be more clear on the issues around this, and have more structure and guidance from HUD and its state and county-level counterparts.

Also from the Florida Realtors article:

“It’s important not to trivialize the issue of service animals because of abuses of the law, Grosso said. “Very often, there is some nefarious attribution to people who request assistance animals. But many times, there are people with significant disabilities who legitimately need the assistance of a service animal. They bear the burden of the effects of service animal abuses.”

Selling a home in Delray – Should we accept a buyer’s contingent offer?

We received this excellent question recently:

 

Our house has been on the market for awhile and now we have an offer.

But, it’s contingent upon the sale of the buyer’s home. What does this mean? Should we accept it? It’s the first offer we’ve had in a few months, so I’m thinking yes. Help!

 

Our advice would certainly depend on a lot of factors, but it’s a maybe!

If your home has been on the market for awhile and it’s not a seller’s market in your home’s price bracket, you don’t want to unilaterally just pass on this – it could be a great opportunity.

We’d want to ask some more questions… Can we work with that buyereir offer to a place that works for both parties? Also, is their home on the market? Is their home under contract? If so, we’d want to look at that contract. We would need to understand how strong their offer is.

There are times that we’ve represented buyers that came forth with an offer like this. It wasn’t our listing, and guess what? We got to the closing table – because we know how to get our buyers to the closing table. In this case, the agent on the other side needs to be helpful, too. So, we also look at who that agent is… because that does make a difference, and we are often familiar with that agent.

There’s a particular clause in the contracts here in Florida called a “kick-out clause.” If it’s a buyer’s market, you as a seller may or may not want to consider that. Basically this clause says,

“I’ll take your offer and it’s contingent upon the sale of the home, but I’m leaving it active. I’m taking backup offers, and when I get an offer you’re going to get first right of refusal. If you still want this house, then okay, the contingency’s gone, this house is yours.”

This can be helpful, as it gives the buyer some protection. If she or he is not in a position to own both homes, this offer can be accepted, subject to the above –  a win-win for a buyer and a seller.

The most important thing to know is that every scenario is different, so you want to be sure you are working with the right Realtor… a team that can give you guidance and help you make the right decision for your specific situation.  There are a lot of factors to come together to create the right deal! (That’s the part that we love! It’s the the fun part!)

We’d love the opportunity to help you through scenarios such as this, and to get you to the closing table. Contact us at (561) 571-2289 for a no-obligation consultation!