The Treasure Coast real estate market continues to show signs of stabilizing.
Closed single-family home sales have continued to slow progressively throughout the year, while housing inventory — which reached critically low levels last year — have been increasing steadily, according to new data released Thursday.
Moreover, real estate demand is not as high as it once was, and the median time to go under contract has been increasing.
Here’s what that means for the Treasure Coast real estate market.
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Home sales, demand decreasing
All three Treasure Coast counties have seen declining single-family home sales throughout the year. From January to September, when compared to last year, sales have decreased:
- 27.4%: Martin
- 22.3%: Indian River
- 2.1%: St. Lucie
Inflation, higher mortgage rates and less competition are the reasons experts say home sales have dropped recently.
Mortgage rates have doubled so far this year, and that can drastically affect a buyer’s purchasing power and the property they can afford.
Demand is still there, but it’s not as competitive as it has been in past months.
In September, the median time to go under contract — meaning when the seller accepts an offer from a buyer — was:
- 27: Indian River
- 22: St. Lucie
- 17: Martin
Inventory rising, prices stabilizing
The housing inventory has been increasing throughout the year — up every month since January in Martin County, and consecutively since March in St. Lucie and Indian River.
From January to September, active listings on the Treasure Coast jumped:
- 207.9%: Martin
- 182.5%: St. Lucie
- 111.5%: Indian River
The tri-county region is inching closer to having a “healthy real estate market,” defined as about three to four months worth of supply. In September, there was:
- 2.7: Martin
- 2.8: St. Lucie and Indian River
There are a few reasons why more existing homes were going on the market:
- Sellers capitalizing on high sale prices before the market cools
- Loosened COVID-19 restrictions nationwide. People aren’t feeling the need to move to Florida, and newcomers are moving back to their home states.
- Houses aren’t flying off the market as fast because of rising mortgage and insurance rates.
The additional supply is pushing the market to stabilize. There is less competition for buyers, who previously were vying for properties in high demand but low supply — forcing them to act quickly and pay top dollar.
Now, buyers have more negotiating power.
Median home sale prices aren’t increasing at the same staggering rate seen last year and have even been fluctuating.
In September, the median, single-family home sale price was:
- $551,000: Martin
- $392,590: St. Lucie
- $370,000: Indian River
These trends combined point to a more normal real estate market ahead for both homebuyers and sellers. However, this shift in the real estate market is still early, and it could be months before significant changes take effect.