By Robert Nardi
March 2021 Market Report was record-breaking. This report is released by the Naples Area Board of REALTORS® (NABOR®), which tracks home listings and sales within Collier County (excluding Marco Island). According to the report, March’s historic activity included 1,851 closed sales, $1,582,474,997 in total sales volume, and 60,147 showing appointments. Therefore, March 2021 is the highest performing month on record over the last 13 years (the period NABOR® has tracked vital metrics reflecting the area’s housing market activity). March was also the first month in several years where there were more reported price increases than decreases.
Median closed prices in March increased 12.2 percent to $415,000 (the highest median price increase month/month on record since 2008) from $370,000 in March 2020. In March 2021, there were just 1,819 homes in inventory (the lowest it has been since 2014), which was a 73.2 percent decrease from 6,795 homes in inventory in March 2020.
Pending sales (homes under contract) activity in March also broke records, as seen in the 152.7 percent spike to 2,469 pending listings from 977 pending listings in March 2020. However, broker analysts were quick to remind each other that a high number of sales during the second half of the month last year were lost as we were in a pandemic lockdown. Despite last March’s COVID-19-related market anomaly, this March’s pending sales still eclipsed pending sales activity reported in March over the previous eight years.
The NABOR® March 2021 Market Reports compare single-family home and condominium sales (via the Southwest Florida MLS), price ranges, and geographic segmentation and include an overall market summary. NABOR® sales statistics are presented in chart format ( CLICK HERE ) for those who enjoy a more in-depth analysis.
What does this all mean?
It means that the housing supply is low and demand is very high, which erodes our inventory. Also, because of shortages, new construction is slowing down. Builders cannot meet the current demand, so many of them stopped selling until they are confident of the availability of products and delivery times. Hence, the reason the re-sale market is huge now.
It truly is like going into battle when you are representing a Buyer in this current market.
Buyers have to have their arsenal of weapons like:
• a solid pre-approval letter or proof of funds,
• make a competitive offer or in some cases, just a flat out full-price offer,
• shorten inspection and mortgage contingencies,
• be willing to make up the difference between appraised value and selling price if getting a mortgage and
• be prepared to put down a larger amount of money in escrow.
I have seen it all this year, including multiple offers within two hours of the listing going live in MLS, Sellers being in the driver seat, and demanding all contingencies be waived (which I frown upon). Still, if the Buyer wants the house, the Sellers’ demands need to be met. If they are not, the Seller moves on to the next Buyer who is willing to succumb to their demands.
I recently had remote Buyers and found a small condo off of Park Shore Dr., West of 41.
He and his wife flew in to see it and realized that it would not accommodate their family of five. It was an “AS IS” contract, and so they terminated the contract. As soon as they released it, the listing REALTOR ® was thrilled because she put it on the market for $25,000 more. And you know what, she may get it!
For 2022, rentals are going like hotcakes, and most people are signing up for three months, January through the end of March. I highly advise if you are thinking about renting next year during the season, you should try to book as soon as possible. You can go to www.BuyNaples.net to view our rentals and other rentals online, or you can call my Rental Operations Manager, Corine Bordges, at 239-206-6457. She would have the most up-to-date inventory and availability.
By the way, if you own a furnished property in Naples, you might consider renting it for the season or even out of season. It appears that the demand for rentals has significantly gone up along with its pricing.
I wish you all the best! Please stay happy & healthy, and hopefully, we will see you soon!