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Miami Market Report: Miami Market Cashes In, In 2013

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The Douglas Elliman 4Q 2013 South Florida Market Reports came out yesterday for Miami, Fort Lauderdale, Boca Raton, and Palm Beach, giving an updated look at the goings on of our crazy real estate market. Here now, the author of all four reports, Jonathan Miller, has his own brand of sweet commentary on the Miami Report. Take it away Jonathan.

The final quarter of 2013 built on the trends established in the prior quarters as presented in the just released Elliman Report: Miami Sales 4Q 2013 that I author for Douglas Elliman. Here are a few of the results:

- Like last quarter, highest prices since 2008 (post credit crunch).
- Highest number of 4Q sales in more than 7 years (since we began tracking).
- Mortgage purchases (28.8% share) rose but market still dominated by cash buyers.
- Like prior quarter, fastest days on market in 7 years.
- Non-distressed market share (excludes foreclosures and short sales) rose 8.7% to 67.2% of overall market.
- Elevated demand from international and New York City consumers continued.

Shift in Mix
Some of the key reasons for price gains market wide over the past several years has been the shift in mix away from lower priced distressed sales, an improving regional economy, continued influx of international demand (plus a lot of New Yorkers). Distressed sales accounted for 32.9% of all sales in the quarter, down from 62.9% three years ago.

Inventory is Changing
While overall inventory fell a modest 1.2% from year ago levels, the devil is in the details. Distressed inventory (short sales and foreclosures) fell 20.3% while non-distressed inventory rose 3.3% over the same period. The growth in non-distressed inventory is largely due the significant increase in prices of existing housing which is providing more equity to homeowners allowing them to sell and enter the market as buyers.

Cash Still Dominates All Segments
Cash buyers, whether they are international, regional or other US sources, still rule the market, bypassing the legacy of bad lending decisions banks made during the previous housing boom. They comprise 61.2% of the market in the fourth quarter however the disparity between condos and single family sales remains quite large. About 71.1% of condo buyers paid cash and 45.3% of single family buyers paid cash.

There are a lot more numbers for Miami (and 3 other South Florida markets) released today by Douglas Elliman. You can pull down all the 4Q 2013 reports: Miami, Boca Raton, Fort Lauderdale and Palm Beach.
· Douglas Elliman 4Q Market Reports [Douglas Elliman]
· Market Analysis [Curbed Miami]