Tuesday, December 31, 2013

In the Rearview

It's the last day of 2013 and the time when we look back at the significant events of the year. For the Cocoa Beach real estate market it was a year of continued recovery with one massive unexpected event. Our big event was the change of MLS providers in July that destroyed the Melbourne Association of Realtors. Without going into detail, their leadership went all-in on an MLS bluff that was called by the membership. Brevard County will have one united Realtor association in 2014 as a result. Democracy won the day. I suspect my suggestion of a new name, Florida United Brevard Area Realtors, will be rejected because of the unfortunate acronym. Whatever.

As was evident much earlier in the year, 2013 finished as another record-breaking year in numbers of sold properties in Cocoa Beach and Cape Canaveral. The MLS this morning is showing 659 sold condos and townhomes in the year in our two cities and 121 single family and half-duplex homes. We have to go all the way back to 2005 to find another year that exceeds those numbers. Active for sale inventory stands at about half the sold numbers for the year. Subtract the yet-to-be-built (and unlikely to be built soon) properties and pickings are slim.

The lowest priced single family home to sell in the year was a 1000 square foot 3/1 in need of a lot of work in Cape Canaveral close to the beach that closed for $85,000. Highest price paid in the year was $1,430,000 for a furnished seven year old 4/3.5 with 3379 square feet on 50' of ocean in south Cocoa Beach. Just over half of all single family homes sold were waterfront.

Eight small (+-400sf) condos sold at prices between $20,000 and $30,000. A total of 165 sold for less than $100,000. In the half million dollars and up range, there were 23 sales with the highest at $750,000 for a penthouse 4th floor 4/4 corner on the river at West End Rd. behind Florida Seafood. It was furnished, had 10' ceilings, 4299 square feet and came with 2 garage spots. Eight of the $500,000+ sales were at the Meridian.

23% (149 units) of the closed condos were either short sales or foreclosures. There are 32 total short sales and foreclosures currently for sale out of 312 total.

2014 promises to be interesting and different than 2013. Sellers can reasonably expect to get more than they may have gotten this year. Whether they get enough to make up for the cost of waiting remains to be seen. I expect the number of sales to be less in the coming year even as prices are higher and I expect the decline in distressed sales to continue as well. To those involved in our market I wish you a prosperous new year. Snowbirds, stop by my office while you're in town and say Hello. Don't forget to make some room at the free coffee station at Publix for your fellow birds. Happy New Year, all.

For the loser now
Will be later to win
For the times they are a-changin'.
_____Bob Dylan