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Regional Spotlight—October marked the 23rd consecutive month where Miami’s home prices appreciated compared to year-ago figures, according to a new report from the 30,000-member MIAMI Association of REALTORS® and the local Multiple Listing Service (MLS) system. The median sales price for a Miami home in October was $220,000, a significant increase of 18.9 percent when compared to $185,000 during the same period last year. Moreover, median condo prices also showed double-digit appreciation. The median sales price for a Miami condo was $170,000, an increase of 17.2 percent from the year-ago median price of $145,000.

“The 23 consecutive months of appreciation of Miami home and condo prices is a remarkable sign of the vitality and strength of South Florida’s real estate market,” said 2013 Chairman of the Board of the MIAMI Association of REALTORS® Natascha Tello. “Rising home and condo values is a reflection of increased demand from international buyers from around the world, creating a great opportunity for sellers.”

Average sales prices were also marked by double-digit growth. The average sales price of a Miami single-family home in October was $421,546, a 29.9 percent increase compared to $324,611 at the same time last year. Similarly, average Miami condo prices increased by 11.8 percent to $296,568 relative to the prior year where the average price was $265,225.

Short Sales Decline, Traditional Sales Remain Strong
Overall, home and condo sales experienced a modest single-digit decline in October compared to last year’s figures, but remained strong relative to historical averages and performance. While traditional sales showed strong gains, short sales greatly declined due primarily to the government shutdown delaying transactions requiring tax return verifications. Delays in FHA funding and other government related factors also contributed to fewer closings in October.

Last month, 1,060 homes were sold in Miami. This represented a modest decrease of 6.5 percent compared to 1,134 in October 2012. However, the figure was similar to September’s sales when 1,108, 48 fewer, homes were sold.

Condo sales were also strong in October. While the 1,416 condos sold in October represented a 1.2 percent decrease compared to year-ago figures, they were 4.7 percent greater than September’s condo sales figures of 1,352.

Double-Digit Growth in Traditional Sales
The market share and number of traditional sales continued to significantly grow in October compared to the year-ago figures. Of the 1,060 homes sold last month, 641 of them (60.5 percent) were traditional sales; meanwhile, REO and short sales accounted for 20.8 percent and 18.8 percent of last month’s sales, respectively. This is a significant increase in the number of traditional sales compared to October 2012 figures where they accounted for just half (49.8 percent) of sales and REO and short sales were 23.1 percent and 27percent , respectively, of total sales for that month. Thus, traditional sales have experienced a significant double-digit growth of 13.5 percent relative to year ago figures. REO and short sales declined by 16 percent and 35.2 percent, respectively.