Sunday, March 19, 2023

Peak Season

My corn plant, Dracaena fragrans, bloomed again this winter for the third or fourth time in over 25 years. The sweet scent of these blooms, which open a few every night for about a week, confirms the Latin name. There is never a clue from year to year whether this one will be a blooming year. It's always a December surprise and a welcome one.

Halfway through March and the real estate market in Cocoa Beach and Cape Canaveral is quite active with 42 condo units receiving an accepted contract so far in the month. Half of the units getting a contract had been on the market for over 45 days, all but three of them with reduced prices, most of those reductions substantial. What this tells me is that sellers are starting to realize that last year's high prices aren't working and they are dropping prices to attract buyers and it's working. Only two of the contracted units in March that had been on the market for less than 45 days had reduced prices. This supports the idea that priced-right properties will sell quickly in most cases. 

There are 137 existing condo and townhouse units for sale this morning in Cocoa Beach and Cape Canaveral. Half have been on the market longer than 45 days. There are 22 existing single family homes for sale in our two cities. Two thirds of them have been on the market longer than 45 days. So far in March seven homes have received an accepted contract. That means we currently have about a two month supply at the current sales rate. New listings for all residential property types seems to be matching the sales rate keeping inventory numbers relative stable, although low.

For those hoping to purchase, there is still competition and multiple offers have not gone away especially for desirable properties. Selling prices in several condo complexes have pulled back from last year's high numbers and that trend seems persistent so there is a nugget of hope for prospective buyers. We have yet to see any impact from the looming inspections, structural reserves and reserve study requirements but it is getting closer. Stay tuned. 

Those visiting our area during March, which is our peak season, may have a distorted view of what life is like here. There is a convergence of spring breakers, baseball teams and snowbirds that makes March the busiest, craziest, most crowded month of the year for us. After Easter we revert to our much more sedate normal pace. I would encourage those who have only visited during the spring to return at some other time to get a more balanced picture of what Cocoa Beach is really like. On second thought, please take my word for it. No need to waste a trip here just to see us during slow season. Cheers.

“It says here in this history book that luckily, the good guys have won every single time. What are the odds?” -Norm MacDonald