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Jupiter home sales continue their decline

The slide in pending home sales in the Northern Palm Beaches has now reached 8 months. Over the past 30 days in the Jupiter area, the number of homes put under contract dropped another 7% to yet another new six year low. Since April 15th, the number of homes under contract has dropped an amazing 42%. Certainly seasonal forces have a dramatic effect almost every year at this time, but this year’s drop was the biggest we have seen and that record low is not encouraging.

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Besides seasonal effects, why the big drop? Interest rates have climbed, but since December 1st they are down and today sit at the lowest levels we have seen in 3 months. Buyers are very cost and condition conscious, not wanting to overpay in a market that many feel is overpriced. Finding quality inventory under $500,000 isn’t easy with median single family home prices continuing their climb. In 2018, the median price of a  single family Jupiter home sits right at $510,000, up significantly from last year’s number of $470,000. We have taken out, what were the old record highs of 2005, and this year the median price of a single family Jupiter home is $30,000 higher than the old record, set 13 years ago.

Wages have not risen to keep up with home prices, which is troublesome for many market segments. The stock market volatility we have been seeing, has added more concern for the coming year, but million dollar home sales in the Jupiter area set record after record. With two weeks still left before we write the final chapter on 2018, million dollar home sales in the Northern Palm Beaches are already ahead of the old record high by over 11%.

Watch the $1 million+ sales numbers very closely as they have truly been the driving force of the Jupiter area real estate market. This year over 11% of all home sales in the Northern Palm Beaches closed at $1 million dollars and above and as long as this market segment stays strong it should be bullish for Jupiter home sales and prices.

We are about 4 weeks away, from what typically is when historically strong seasonal home buying kicks into gear. If the economy keeps on a steady footing, and the stock markets starts to trade in a more normal range, it should be a great year for Jupiter home sales and prices. Limited supply, high new construction costs, coupled with seasonal home buyers, more people relocating to the state and interest rates stopping their climb could all add up to higher prices for homes in the months ahead.

If you are considering buying, or selling, in this market, please take the time to interview at least 3 brokers and ask questions. Get informed. Condo sales typically start picking up around January 15th with single family home sales starting to rise later in February so if you are selling you already need to be doing preparations for marketing photos as they need to be taken right after the new year. Every home and every neighborhood has totally different metrics so dive into the details to plan your pricing and marketing strategies. Probably not a great time for sellers to “test the market” unless they have a unique property and situation. In many neighborhoods, there is nothing worse that a seller could do than over price their home. 

If you are buying, my recommendation would be to do your best to find the right house over the next 3 or 4 weeks. Some motivated sellers, some great deals and the odds are very good prices may be heading higher over the next 5 or 6 months. Buying now, before the seasonal buying competition begins, may end up saving you thousands of dollars.

If Paradise Sharks can ever be of assistance with any of your real estate needs, anywhere in either Palm Beach or Martin County just let us know at tom@paradisesharks.com or 561.308.0175.


Fins up…..