By Robert Nardi
Buyers fleeing frigid weather descended on Naples in full force during January, which reported a 38.5 percent increase in overall pending sales (homes under contract) to 2,210 pending sales from 1,359 pending sales in January 2020, according to the January 2021 Market Report, released by the Naples Area Board of REALTORS® (NABOR®), which tracks home listings and sales within Collier County (excluding Marco Island).
Not surprisingly, as a result of impressive activity during the fourth quarter of 2020, overall closed sales in January increased 49.7 percent to 1,109 closed sales from 741 closed sales in January 2020, leaving agents with 2.6 months of inventory at the end of the first month of the new year.
According to the report, Naples's showings increased 36 percent to 57,468 in January from 42,299 in January 2020. This was the highest number of showings recorded in one month over the past 12 months. Overall inventory in January fell 59.7 percent to 2,750 homes from 6,828 homes in January 2020. The radical and continuous reduction in inventory is changing the dynamic of the transaction.
The median closed price in January increased 14.7 percent to $395,000 from $344,500 in January 2020. And while this is $10,000 lower than the median closed price reported in December, with the shortage of inventory, and the fact that sales for $2 million properties increased over 65% from last year, prices will continue to go in an upward trend.
The NABOR® January 2021 Market Reports compare single-family home and condominium sales (via the Southwest Florida MLS), price ranges, and geographic segmentation and includes an overall market summary. NABOR® sales statistics are presented in chart format ( CLICK HERE ) for those who like to crunch numbers.
What does this all mean?
It clearly means we are in a Sellers' market. When demand increases and supply decreases, prices go up. Over the past several months, if a single-family pool home goes on the market between $350,000 - $550,000, it usually has multiple offers on it within hours and is sold in a day. Condos are certainly selling too, but not at the same ferociousness of a single-family pool home. With COVID continuing to loom, people are still leery with sharing coming elements, i.e., elevators, pools, lobbies, etc. Based on this Sellers' market, I have received offers with an escalating clause, simply stating the current Buyer will increase their offer over the other competing Buyer's offer by $1000. However, when considering an offer, it is just not based on price. You look at other factors like cash or mortgage, closing date, and other terms and conditions. These escalating clauses do not always work, and I think they give false hope to the Buyers. Also, I am seeing a lot of personal letters being written by the Buyers to the Sellers. These are written to make an emotional impact on the Sellers and sway them to pick the Buyers' offer. I do see that these letters do make an impact if the offers are similar in nature.
Our seasonal rentals are up from last year. This year 75% of our seasonal rentals were for three months. Once again, COVID and people giving the ability to work remotely have made this impact. Why stay in the snow and cold when you can come to sunny and warm Southwest Florida and work? We are currently taking reservations for the 2022 season, and we still have some great rentals available in April. To see our current inventory, you can go to www.BuyNaples.net and click on the Menu bar on the very top right and then select Rentals. You can search rentals there or if you scroll down, you can see all of our rentals. Also, you can call Corine Bordges, our Rental Operations Manager, at 239-206-6457 for availability. In some cases, we may have to put you on a waitlist because we generally allow the current tenants to renew for next year.
Stay safe, and of course, if I could help you in any way, please feel free to contact me directly at 239-293-3592.
Wishing you a healthy and happy spring!