The South Florida real estate market has been booming, and in the opinion of the chief economist at the Federal National Mortgage Association, commonly referred to as Fannie Mae, the trend will likely continue into next year. According to a recent Sun Sentinel article, Doug Duncan spoke in Fort Lauderdale on Wednesday and commented on rising wages and their effect on the housing markets not only in Florida, but across the nation. Duncan suggested that with gas prices holding low, prospective homebuyers have been able to stash away a bit more each month, saving for big-ticket purchases. “Households have come out of the crisis very conservative financially,” he said. “The potential is there for 2016 to be a pretty good year.”
The real estate market in South Florida has appeared to recover from the collapse that occurred from 2006 to 2011, however home prices have plateaued over the last year. Concerns have arisen about the affordability of most of the new construction in the area, leaving some industry experts fearful that middle-income buyers are being priced out. But Duncan, who forecasts and analyzes the economy and housing for the government-run mortgage company, believes that higher salaries might help overcome these concerns. Patrick Flood, regional operating partner of Plantation-based Supreme Lending, stated that he feels “very good about the sustainability of the market right now.” He believes that the South Florida housing market is almost back to “normal” according to historical standards.
Palm Beach and Broward counties have experienced a decline in the number of homes entering foreclosure in recent months, despite the fact that Florida still leads the nation in foreclosure rate. From January to March of this year, the new cases in Palm Beach County have fallen by more than half when compared to the same time last year. March filings actually dropped a whopping 62% from the previous year. In Broward, the decline in the first quarter was 41%, with a 19% drop in March. With fewer foreclosures and a steady increase in home purchases, it’s not surprising that experts are predicting continued strengthening of the Miami real estate market.