A torrid December concludes a terrific 2013, the best sales year since 2005. Here at the Grant Group Sales Surpassed 2005, (2005 sales often considered the Holy Grail of Real Estate Activity in Southwest Florida). Several factors aligned to create this robust real estate market:
- Declining inventory creating rising median home prices. The median price range has increased every month since December of 2011. At the end of 2011, the median sales price was $175,000. Two years later, over $235,000.
- New Construction. Vacant home site sales and speculative building are back.
- Strong commercial improvement with major national chains filling once empty shopping centers.
- Relocation and many start-up businesses: Hertz being the prime player.
- Threat of rising interest rates. Back in May when it appeared interest rates might skyrocket, this propelled prospective buyers off the fence leading to an incredible third quarter in sales.
- Even the weather cooperated, despite record rainfall; another mild hurricane season strengthened the state insurance pool and gave a once tentative industry confidence to write more Florida policies.
- Tourism has reached record levels and the upcoming season will be very strong.
- The unprecedented stock gains since 2008, has contributed to the red hot real estate market. This profit taking is reflected on the extraordinary number of buyers who are paying cash for home. About seven out of ten, says Wes Kunkle, NABOR president.
Another factor driving price increases: limited new development since 2007 and limited vacant land for future development. That puts further emphasis on the resale market-driving
prices. The population in Naples which has grown about 13% since 2000 and should continue to increase over the next decade, but Naples planning officials will keep density low.
“The city is primarily a built-out community” says Paul Bollenback, building official with the City of Naples.
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