NAPLES — The Naples real estate market is seeing several signs of further improvement as the inventory of homes continues to decrease and median prices increased for the fifth consecutive month, the Naples Area Board of Realtors announced Friday.
Brenda Fioretti, NABOR’s media relations committee chairwoman and a managing broker for Prudential Florida Realty in Naples, said Realtors are excited about the five consecutive months of median price increases.
“That is definitely showing a steady trend upward,” Fioretti said.
The median price increased 22 percent overall from $185,000 in April 2011 to $226,000 in April 2012, according to a prepared statement from NABOR.
Statewide, median prices for homes rose in April. The statewide median sales price for single-family existing homes in April was $144,350, up 10.2 percent from the year-ago figure. The statewide median for townhome-condo properties was $108,000, up 16.1 percent over April 2011. Nationally, median prices increased by 1.9 percent.
The median is the price at which half the homes sell for more and half for less.
In the Naples area, the total number of sales of single-family homes and condos was down slightly from the same month last year — 960, compared to 967 in April 2011, according to the NABOR report.
Jack McCabe, a Deerfield Beach-based real estate analyst and CEO of McCabe Research & Consulting LLC, said the real estate market is seeing some positive indicators in pricing and sales during the past 12 months.
“However, we have to look at the housing market and how it relates to other economic indicators,” McCabe said. “My concerns are that the eurozone debt crisis that may head Europe into a recession will have a negative effect in our housing market because so many sales in the last 12 months have been to foreign nationals.”
Fioretti said the short sales — sales for less than market value — and distressed property sales are below 25 percent of the transactions, which is a healthy sign. At one point short sales and foreclosures made up more than 60 percent of the market, she said.
“It means distressed properties are checking out,” Fioretti said.
Overall inventory dropped by 13 percent to 7,130, down from 8,214 in April 2011, according to the report.
As existing home inventory continues to decline, Fioretti said, construction of new homes will start to increase the local inventory.
However, McCabe said, the market is far from back to normal.
“While Naples’ total inventory is down to 7,130 units, the number of open foreclosure cases and mortgage loans that are 90 days or more past due dwarfs the Realtors’ listed inventory,” McCabe said. “It’s my opinion that over the next year we are gong to see fewer foreign buyers and an increasing number of distressed properties for sale that will have a negative impact in housing prices.”
According to the NABOR report, overall pending sales increased 20 percent in the $500,000 to $1 million price category from 895 pending sales to 1,070 pending sales for the 12-month period ending April 2012.
Pending and closed single-family homes sales in the $1 million to $2 million price range also showed a slight increase from the same month last year.
The monthly and quarterly reports track Realtor sales made through the Sunshine Multiple Listing Service (MLS) in Collier County, excluding Marco Island.
The Naples real estate market is seeing several signs of further improvement as the inventory of homes continues to decrease and overall median prices have increased for the fifth consecutive month, the Naples Area Board of Realtors announced Friday.
Brenda Fioretti, NABOR’s media relations chairwoman and a managing broker for Prudential Florida Realty in Naples, said Realtors are excited about the five consecutive months of median price increases.
"That is definitely showing a steady trend upward," Fioretti said.
The median price increased 22 percent overall from $185,000 in April 2011 to $226,000 in April 2012, according to a prepared statement that NABOR released Friday.
Return to naplesnews.com later today for more on this developing story