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January supply of unsold Cape homes spikes higher

March 1, 2019
By BOB & GERI QUINN - Homing In , Cape Coral Daily Breeze

Based on a lot of the recent commentary in the media, the "buzz" in 2019 will be all about a "shift" in the overall Southwest Florida real estate market to a buyer's market. This analysis is largely based on a combination of factors throughout our area, including a drop off in closed home sales at the tail end of 2018, which, as we noted last week, has continued into a double dip decline in January of this year. There have also been large weekly increases in the number of price reductions made by sellers who have had their homes overpriced, along with a higher supply, or inventory of homes listed for sale. All of these numbers have gone to more extreme levels, swinging well beyond the usual seasonal patterns that we have seen in recent years, so it is understandable that concerns about a market shift are being raised.

And indeed, right now the Cape Coral single-family home market has shifted into a buyer's market, although in some cases, history suggests it may be a temporary shift. Let's begin with the fact that we are always somewhat leery of broad market overviews, and one of the main reasons we choose to analyze the Cape Coral real estate market by specific property segments, is that because of the unique features of our various neighborhoods, we often have distinctly different market conditions within our markets. For example, the single-family sailboat access canal home segment has been mostly locked in a higher inventory buyer's market for several years, so there really is no "shift" in this part of our market, except that it has gone deeper into a buyer's market. While the dry lot home segment has been mostly locked in a lower inventory seller's market, so this segment has shifted into a higher inventory buyer's market. However, in the past, when the unsold supply of dry lot homes has spiked this high, it has also quickly retreated back to the lower, more recent "normal" levels.

So the takeaway on the "buzz" about the overall Southwest Florida market shifting into a buyer's market is that for some segments of our market in Cape Coral, such as for dry lot homes, this shift may still be more of a short-term seasonal shift. This will likely make it more difficult for a seller to get their home sold in the near-term due to the added competition from more sellers, but it may not be a significant long-term shift in the trend for this segment. The fact remains that if a home is priced correctly to the market, it will still sell quickly. But if a home is overpriced to the market, it just becomes part of the statistical pile of homes on the monthly supply of unsold homes list.

For now, we will be closely monitoring the market conditions over the first half of this year, looking for a confirmation from the market about the ultimate direction of these recent shifts. For example, we will be looking for the typical seasonal decline in the supply of unsold homes between the months of March through June, along with an increase in the number of closed sales during the same time frame. We will also be tracking median sales prices, which have been holding up so far, to make sure they do not roll over and drop to lower levels, which would escalate our market concerns.

In the overall Cape Coral single-family home market, the monthly supply of unsold homes listed for sale in January was at 11 months, which was the highest single month of unsold supply in our overall market since it reached 12 months back in January 2014. The 11 months of unsold supply in January was 37.5 percent higher than the 8 months of unsold supply in both January 2018, and from this past December. The 11 months of unsold supply in January was also running 69.23 percent higher than the average monthly supply of 6.5 months for the entire year in 2018.

Gulf access canal homes

The monthly supply of unsold Cape Coral Gulf access canal homes listed for sale in January was at 17 months, which was the highest single month of unsold supply in Gulf access homes since hitting 21 months back in January 2014. The 17 months of unsold supply in January was 54.55 percent higher than the 11 months of unsold supply in both January 2018, and from this past December. The unsold supply this January was also running 71.37 percent higher than the average monthly supply of 9.92 months for the year in 2018.

Sailboat access canal homes

The monthly supply of unsold Cape Coral sailboat access canal homes listed for sale in January was also at 17 months, which was the highest January total in this segment since 2015, when the supply registered at 19 months. The highest single month of unsold supply in sailboat access homes during 2018 was 18 months in November. The 17 months of unsold supply in January was 30.77 percent higher than the 13 months of unsold supply in both January 2018, and from this past December. The unsold supply in January was running 60.68 percent higher than the average monthly supply of 10.58 months for the year in 2018.

Freshwater canal homes

The monthly supply of unsold Cape Coral freshwater canal homes listed for sale in January was at 12 months, which was the highest January total in this segment since 2014, when the supply came in at 15 months. It was also the single highest monthly total for freshwater canal homes since reaching 12 months back in February 2016. The 12 months of unsold supply in January was 33.33 percent higher than the 9 months of unsold supply in both January 2018, as well as from this past December. The unsold supply in January was also running 79.91 percent higher than the average monthly supply of 6.67 months for the year in 2018.

Dry lot homes

The monthly supply of unsold Cape Coral dry lot (non-canal) homes listed for sale in January also jumped higher to 10 months, which was the highest January total in this segment since 2009, when the unsold supply came in at 14 months. It was also the single highest monthly total for dry lot homes since hitting 11 months back in February 2009. The 10 months of unsold supply in January was 66.67 percent higher than the 6 months of unsold supply from a year ago, in January 2018, while coming in 42.86 percent above the 7 months of unsold supply registered this past December. The unsold supply in January was also running 71.53 percent higher than the average monthly supply of 5.83 months for the year in 2018.

(The January 2019 sales data for this article was obtained from the Florida Realtors Multiple Listing Service Matrix for Lee County, Fla., as of Feb. 18, 2019. It was compiled by Bob and Geri Quinn and it includes information specifically for Cape Coral single-family homes, not including condominiums, foreclosure, or short sales. The data and statistics are believed to be reliable, however, they could be updated and revised periodically, and are subject to change without notice. The Quinns are a husband and wife real estate team with the RE/MAX Realty Team office in Cape Coral. They have lived in Cape Coral for over 39 years. Geri has been a full-time Realtor since 2005, and Bob joined with Geri as a full-time Realtor in 2014. Their real estate practice is mainly focused on Cape Coral residential property and vacant lots.)

 
 
 

 

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