Home sales were bridled by low inventory during October, but new listings are on the rise according to the October 2021 Market Report released by the Naples Area Board of REALTORS® (NABOR®), which tracks home listings and sales within Collier County (excluding Marco Island). Overall closed sales for October decreased 32.1 percent to 858 closed sales from 1,263 closed sales in October 2020. But irrespective of the home buying frenzy that took place during the second half of 2020 (including October 2020), closed sales in October were historically higher than average for a typical October in Naples, even with the lowest inventory level on record by NABOR®.
Broker analysts who reviewed the October Market Report anticipate more sellers will enter the market over the next few months as the lure of paradise is already beckoning seasonal and foreign visitors back to our shores now that many international travel restrictions have been lifted and the threat of COVID-19 has been reduced.
The report shows pre-season interest already in play as October’s pending sales (1,186 pending sales) and showings (33,578) were above summer month levels.
The overall median closed price in October increased 16.9 percent to $450,000 from $385,000 in October 2020. The COVID-19 pandemic affected buying behaviors and sales of single-family homes outpaced condominiums as people sought more open space in 2020; but those buying behaviors have now shifted. While overall inventory decreased 76.1 percent in October to 1,240 properties from 5,181 properties in October 2020, condominium inventory decreased 84.4 percent in October. As such, there were nearly half as many condominiums (435) available compared to single-family homes (805) at the end of October. Not surprising, the median closed price for condominiums increased 31 percent to $370,000 from $282,500 in October 2020, while the median closed prices for single-family homes increased 18.8 percent to $615,000 from $517,750 in October 2020.
“Closed sales are down for one reason: we just don’t have the inventory,” said Molly Lane, Senior Vice President at William Raveis Real Estate. “But that doesn’t necessarily mean prices will keep rising at the rate we saw this past year. With inflation surging, now is the time to sell your home in Naples because interest rates will eventually rise so the number of potential buyers will thin, and this will likely also level out list prices.”
Mike Hughes, Vice President and General Manager for Downing-Frye Realty, Inc., commented, “In the past, if you couldn’t find a home to buy, you’d just rent for a while until something came along. But there are few rentals today and this is exacerbating the low inventory issue because sellers can’t just pick up and move when their home sells. A REALTOR® can help them develop a plan that includes finding a place to live once their home sells.”
Hughes also pointed out that these kind of “hot markets” don’t last forever. “It’s impossible to predict the future but we know from history that things happen—like pandemics, inflation, or hurricanes—that have impacted the housing market in Naples.”