As housing prices rise, foreclosures stay high
By Scott Blake
Recent real estate reports show the two faces of Miami-Dade County's housing market: one heralded for rising prices and all-cash purchases and the other still troubled by a high foreclosure rate.
Pending sales of single-family homes and condominiums in the county rose 22% in June compared with June 2011, according to a new report from the Miami Association of Realtors.
That followed another association report trumpeting seven straight months of sales price increases, capped by a strong June.
In June, the median price for Miami-Dade condominiums rose 34% to $160,000 and the median price for single-family homes rose 5% to $194,250, compared with a year earlier. The median price means half sell for more and half for less.
"Dwindling supply coupled with rising [sales] contract activity will continue to drive price appreciation in Miami-Dade," Martha Pomares, the association's chairman, said in a statement.
Meanwhile, Miami-Dade led all Florida counties in June with 3,260 properties receiving a foreclosure filing, followed by Broward County with 2,197 properties receiving a filing, according to RealtyTrac Inc. A filing includes a default notice, a foreclosure auction notice or bank repossession.
Despite the high level of foreclosure activity compared with other areas, foreclosure filings for June were the lowest monthly total of the year for Miami-Dade.
Topping last month's filing in the county were Miami with 2,206 filings, followed by Hialeah with 395 and Homestead with 274, according to RealtyTrac.
The association said there is a strong demand in Miami-Dade for bank-owned properties.
It also noted that improved processing of short sales — in which a mortgage holder and homebuyer agree to sell a home at a reduced price to avoid a foreclosure — has helped decrease listings of "distressed' properties and contribute to price appreciation.
In June, the association reported, 44% of all closed residential sales in the county were distressed, including bank-owned properties and short sales, compared with 57% in June 2011 and 46% in May 2012.
In addition, 65% of all closed sales in June were all-cash sales, compared with 60% in June 2011 and 64% in May 2012, according to the association.
"Cash sales accounted for 46% of single-family and 77% of condominium closings," the report states. "Nearly 90% of international buyers in Florida purchase properties all cash."
Meanwhile, Florida ranked second in the nation for the highest total of completed foreclosures in the 12 months ended June 30 with 91,000. California ranked first with 125,000 completed foreclosures during the period, according to a National Foreclosure Report released Tuesday by CoreLogic.
In addition, the report found that Florida was first in the nation for having the highest foreclosure inventory as a percentage of all mortgaged homes at 11.5%. New Jersey was second at 6.5%.
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