Lyrics from Cole Porter's famous "I've got you under my skin", written in 1936, came to my mind this month. I admit that I have Nicole Henry's lovely version of that song constantly in my ears and on iTunes. To me, uptempo–and perhaps the great American Songbook–just seems to be her forte.
So, is Nicole singing to or even for home buyers?
I doubt it. But the February numbers for single family homes (condos, coops and townhouses not included) should get prospective buyers thinking of Cole Porter.
In essence, more or less stable asking prices and (year-over-year) slightly soft selling prices created a very very active market in February–with dramatically falling inventory (may I say "dramatically" when it's 50 percent or more?) and a hefty spike in the number of sold houses.
As always, the table is accompanied by a lovely graphic:
Coming back to Nicole Henry and her Cole Porter interpretation: time for buyers to wake up. True, not every buyer is flexible in his or her plans, but those who are should get off the benches. Now.
Table: Single family home data per month’s end for Palm Beach, Broward and Miami-Dade (Florida) counties. Chart: Single family home data Mar 2011 to Feb 2012. Red: median list price, green: median selling price, blue: inventory in months. – Data compiled from SEF-MLS. Also published at http://www.TheModernistAngle.com._
Several real estate markets are starting to show signs of improvement with home prices in the last quarter as the industry demonstrates more signs of stabilizing, according to Clear Capital's latest monthly Home Data Index Market Report.
REO saturation rates have improved in the majority of the country’s largest markets. However, many areas are still battling year-over-year price declines. Clear Capital’s index reports that quarter-over-quarter home price declines were 2.3 percent in the latest quarter, which is less than half compared to the previous month.
“The latest market report results through May suggest that home prices are starting to ease back from the heavy declines seen over the winter,” says Alex Villacorta, director of research and analytics at Clear Capital. “We are still far away from the strong demand needed to fully turn things around for the housing market. However, it is clear from the initial spring sales data that prices are softening, suggesting stabilization in the market."
The High Performers
Seven of the top 15 markets posted quarter-over-quarter property price gains in this month's report, compared to none in last month’s, according to Clear Capital. Here are the seven highest-performing major real estate markets, according to the report.
4. New York, N.Y.-Long Island, N.Y.-No. New Jersey, N.J. Quarter-to-quarter home price change: 1.5% Year-to-year price changes: 1.4% REO saturation: 9.6%
5. Virginia Beach, Va.-Norfolk, Va.-Newport News, Va. Quarter-to-quarter home price change: 1.4% Year-to-year price changes: -13.2% REO saturation: 22.4%
6. Miami-Fort Lauderdale-Miami Beach, Fla. Quarter-to-quarter home price change: 0.6% Year-to-year price changes: -5.2% REO saturation: 39.6%
7. San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, Calif. Quarter-to-quarter home price change: 0.5% Year-to-year price changes: -5% REO saturation: 25%
Tthe lowest-performing market for the fifth straight month was Detroit-Warren-Livonia, Mich., with a 13.2 percent decrease in quarter-over-quarter home price change and a 58 percent REO saturation rate.