Jupiter- Singer Island - Hutchinson Island- Boca Raton - Highland Beach Condo Market Report

I pulled the year over year data from our MLS on several different areas to try and see any trends and reflect what the numbers are saying and how they compare to what's happening in the market.  
Boca Raton condos showed little change in the number of active, new listings,under contract and sold listings from last year but we did see a 17% rise in sales volume and a 14% rise in sales prices. Basically more condos sold for more money this year than last year. Boca Raton has a mixture of ocean condos and non-ocean condos so the sales prices could have been pushed higher by rising prices in non-ocean condos. Average sales prices for Boca Raton condos were $287,914.
Highland Beach, right next door to Boca Raton has only ocean condos so this will give a better picture of what the beach market is doing. Highland Beach had little change in active listings and condos under contract but we did see a 10% fall in new listings and a 17% rise in number of condos sold. Their actual sales volume was up 8% but their sales prices were down 7%. More lower priced condos sold over the past year.  Sales prices of Highland Beach condos were $638,000. 
Hutchinson Island condos show a very different picture with active condo listings up 52%, new listings up 47%, condos under contract up 104% and number sold up 98%. Sales volume was up 94% but sales prices were down 2% at $326,000. Hutchinson Island has all beach condos so you can see more buyers are looking at more affordable condos. Prices here are nearly half of Highland Beach. More second homebuyers are looking for that $300,000 to $400,000 condo as a winter residence and the affordability aspect is driving buyers to Hutchinson Island. 
Juno Beach condos have been fairly level in active, new, under contract and number of condos sold. The only large percentage changes were in sales volume which was up 16% and sales prices up 13% to $512,000. I saw many Juno Beach condos hit record sales prices this year. The Surf had several 2 bedroom condos sell at over $600,000 and a year or two ago they were around $500,000. Strong demand for Juno Beach condos that sit on the sand and they have a nearly private beach. 
 Jupiter condos saw an increase of around 8-9% on active listings, new  listings, under contract and number of condos sold over last year. We saw a large increase of 19% in sales volume and a 10% rise in sale prices. Jupiter includes both non-ocean condos and ocean condos. The drastic rise in sales volume and sales prices could be reflective of the entry level condos being in short supply causing a rapid rise in demand and pricing. Single family homes in Jupiter are starting well above $500,000  making condos and townhomes the affordable entry level into Jupiter living.  The lack of supply and increased demand for entry level housing has driven entry level condo prices up this past year and I expect that to continue. 
Singer Island condos had minimal changes in active and new listings but did see under contract  listings rising 11% and a 46% rise in number of condos sold. Sales volume was up 138% and sales prices were up 63% to $1,024,000. Your first reaction is WOW, Singer Island is hot but we addressed this issue before. Singer Island has three new oceanfront condos that were built and sold this year. Average prices of these condos were $2 million so it skewed our results and trends. Without those new condos I would expect similar results to Highland Beach with the lesser expensive condos selling. 
I will quickly cover the single family home market which is a bit more difficult to show trends due to new construction, different areas selling better than others and homes being knocked down to build new homes. The numbers below are sales prices.
>Boca Raton home prices were up 4% from last year. 
>Jupiter homes were up 21%.
>Jupiter Inlet Colony was up 28%. Very affluent, limited supply and desirable area. 
>Hutchinson Island homes were down 49%. In 2016-2017 they had a brand new housing development called Tarpon Flats that sold out and skewed the numbers upward for those years. 
>Singer Island  homes were down 6%
Jupiter sales prices had a much greater increase over even Boca Raton last year which shows the desirability of Jupiter. Top rated schools, less congestion, plenty of green space. As you can see just seeing numbers and not knowing the intricacies of the factors that may skew the numbers can give you a misleading perception.
The Palm Beach Post ran a recent article last week saying"It's a Buyers Market"
                                         Click Link to Read
You had a chance to review my data that I pulled  from several different cities and areas so to just say a broad statement about being a Buyers Market on the front page really does an injustice to the general public. After you read the article you really getting a better picture of the facts but a headline like "It'a a Buyer's Market" is much more exciting than " The market is changing and prices are leveling out"
. Here's a few quotes from the article:
1) All of the good deals are gone from the market at this point in time.
If all the good deals are gone how can it be a buyers market? You mean the crap no one wants is left for the buyers now. 
2) Palm Beach County home prices remain well below their boom-time highs. During the housing bubble, the county's median resale price peaked at $421,500 in November 2005 (a sum that, adjusted for inflation, equates to $537,622 in today's dollars).
Basically they are saying housing prices are still inexpensive  compared to 2006.   You may want to ask some Buyers and Realtors what their thoughts are on this. 
My take on reading the data, listening to buyers and talking with agents is inventory choices are still tight even though  more inventory is hitting the market. Buyer's you know many communities have little or no properties for sale. Asking prices reflect that lack of inventory. Thereby Sellers are not in such a rush to just give their homes away. Many Buyers may think they are in a Buyer's Market until they make offers and see outright rejections from sellers. Granted properties are sitting longer and quality inventory is in short supply causing many Buyer's to look at alternative options to live. Instead of Boca Raton or Jupiter they may look at Stuart or Port St. Lucie. It all depends upon what is most important to the Buyer. . 
I've seen  quite a few record sales prices in different communities over the past year. Numbers that I never would have expected but when you have a limited quantity of a product there are many people out there who just want what they want. At the end of the day if your buying a vacation/retirement home if you pay $500,000 or $525,000 and you hold on to it for 10 years what's it really going to matter. If you decide to sell it after a few years than we have a much different story. 
The other factor I see is a generalization such as a "Buyers Market in Palm Beach County". Palm Beach County encompasses 2,400 sq. miles and is the third largest County in Florida.  Palm Beach County is about a third the size of the entire state of New Jersey. There is a vast difference in economics from one end of Palm Beach to the other end. We have Palm Beach Island one of the wealthiest towns in America and Pahokee, one of the poorest. Real Estate is Local in Nature and all information is helpful when making decisions but you really have to look at the community you are searching in.
Posted by Jim McLane on


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