03 Jan Bonita Bay News
Happy New Year!
2014 is officially here and what it will bring is really anyone’s guess. But as usual, many experts have weighed in with their predictions. Overall, the feeling is mutual that this year will be another good year for real estate. Here are what housing experts expect to see:
- While a short supply of homes for sale drove prices up in 2013, this year more homes on the market, both old and new, should help inventory return to traditional levels. Here in Southwest Florida, new construction is exploding giving buyers more options.
- Mortgage rates will rise, but loans will be easier to obtain. Rising rates means business will dwindle forcing lenders to compete for buyers by loosening standards.
- Home prices will continue to rise, but at a slower rate due to higher mortgage rates, more supply, and new construction.
- Fewer homes will be underwater as rising home prices help owners regain some equity.
- Foreclosures will fade. We’ve seen this in Southwest Florida with foreclosures and even short sales becoming a nominal factor in our market. Experts at RealtyTrac, which monitors the foreclosure market, says filings won’t return to pre-crisis levels until early 2015.
Here in Southwest Florida, cash is king in the majority of our transactions so the lending environment doesn’t play a huge role in our real estate transactions, but for the small percentage who do obtain loans, a strengthening job market and potentially more lenient mortgage standards may embolden you to buy in 2014.
In order for prices to level off, more inventory is needed and builders are doing their best to make that a reality. Most of our area’s smaller plots of land have been scooped up by homebuilders as well as larger plots further east of town. Land is being cleared, sales centers are popping up, and model homes are being erected quickly in preparation of arriving buyers this season.
Inventory remains a big concern as we head into season. This time last year, in all of Bonita Bay, there were 201 homes and condos for sale (according to the Multiple Listing Service 12/27/2012). Today, as of December 31, 2013, there are only 132 homes and condos for sale in all of Bonita Bay.
Bonita Bay’s single-family homes have increased a bit to just over 8 months worth of inventory as of December 31. This time last year, it was nearly double that at 15 months. And condos in Bonita Bay continue to show 5 months of supply, while last December it was about 10 months.
Whether buying or selling, if you are looking for Realtor representation, think of me.
Your Bonita Bay Realtor,