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Front Page » Top Stories » Every Neighborhood Selling Better

Every Neighborhood Selling Better

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Written by on July 11, 2013

By Meghan Mangrum
As condo prices continue to rise all over Miami, inventory has tumbled to an all-time low, making it difficult to say which areas are the hottest. Inventory is especially tight in areas such as Brickell, Miami Beach and Key Biscayne.

"Pretty much every neighborhood is selling better than they were," said Ron Shuffield, president and CEO of Esslinger-Wooten-Maxwell Realtors (EWM). "Prices are up."

Particularly attractive areas, Mr. Shuffield said, include Key Biscayne, Coral Gables and Pinecrest — areas closer to downtown as well as those that are more attractive to international buyers, who make up at least 40% of the market.

Though prices haven’t increased as substantially as they had been changing in years past, the biggest change is still seen in available inventory.

"There’s no inventory," said Mike Pappas, president and CEO of The Keyes Company. Inventory has dropped from 11,969 condos on the market in June 2011, Keyes reports, to a total of 6,985 on the market today.

A condo selling at Key Biscayne’s median price is $870,000 — up 12% from the $775,000 median in June 2012, Keyes figures say. During the same period, inventory was halved, from 267 properties to 133.

The median priced condo in Miami-Dade County currently sells for $185,000, up from $125,000 at this time last year, and inventory has been plunging all over the county, making for an extremely competitive market, according to Keyes.

The median price of a condo in Brickell in June was $470,000, up from $439,000 in June 2012. Last month, 1,197 condo units were for sale in Brickell, whereas in June 2012 the market listed 1,416 units.

Two years ago, the market supply was equivalent to 10 months of sales, Mr. Pappas said. Now, it’s 2.6 months across the county. A stable market, he said, should have a six-month supply.

"Hopefully the rising prices will give more equity to the sellers who didn’t lose their property" during the market downturn, Mr. Pappas said. "That should improve our number of properties on the market."

One watershed in the marketplace is the number of distressed properties for sale. Distressed or bank-owned properties made up 60% of the market in 2010, whereas such properties are only about one-third of the market today, Mr. Pappas said. This increases the market’s overall health.

"Now you are starting to get to a healthy market," Mr. Pappas said. "We had a bargain, sale price on condos and investors supplemented the market."

Before the market downtown, in a six-year period, developers built 23,000 condos in Brickell, according to Mr. Shuffield. Many of those units went into foreclosure, he said, but most of those buildings are back to where they started as prices have steadily increased over the past couple of years.

Currently, of 830 condos for sale in Brickell, only 36 are considered distressed, Mr. Shuffield said. That’s only 4% of inventory and 17% of total sales.

Of Brickell, "prices are up 60% and distressed properties are basically vanishing," Mr. Shuffield said. The entire county overall, he said, has also seen a decrease in distressed properties — as they constitute only 13% of all inventory and 36% of sales. To read the entire issue of Miami Today online, subscribe to e-MIAMI TODAY, an exact digital replica of the printed edition.

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